Netherlands vs Republic of Ireland
Johan Cruijff Arena is the venue as the Netherlands look to finish the job and reach the upcoming 2024 European Championship against the already-eliminated Republic of Ireland.
Among Europe’s top teams, the Netherlands are one of the rare yet to qualify for next summer’s tournament, albeit they are in a pole position to reach the Euros for the second time in a row following a last-gasp win over Greece last time out. Coming into their penultimate Euro 2024 qualifier, Ronald Koeman’s men sit second in Group B, level on points with Greece but with a game in hand and a superior H2H record. Despite falling behind in the reverse fixture against Ireland, the Dutch fought back to claim a 2-1 victory, extending their unbeaten H2H run to three matches (W2, D1). Excluding other competitions, the Netherlands boast a flawless record against Ireland in Euro qualifying (W4), suggesting they should seal a coveted qualification with a game to spare.
On the other hand, Ireland’s hopes of qualifying for their first Euro finals since 2016 came crashing down long ago as after losing five of their seven games in Group B (W2), they start this round with a theoretical chance of securing a top-two finish. Both Ireland’s wins came against continental minnows Gibraltar, which is perhaps the reason behind manager Stephen Kenny’s inevitable departure at the end of this international break. Away from home, the ‘Boys in Green’ had lost to France and Greece by a combined score of 4-1 before dismantling Gibraltar 4-0 last time out. Ten of Kenny’s 11 wins in charge of Ireland have come against Europe’s worst-ranked sides, such as Gibraltar and Malta (D10, L17), meaning it’s hard to expect an upset here.