A victory over the Faroe Islands would see Ireland leapfrog rivals Sweden and Austria to occupy the all-important second place in Group C.
With 16 points, Germany look to have qualification sewn up, reflected by their 1/20 odds of winning the group. The Boys in Green still have an excellent chance of making the play-offs though and Giovanni Trapattoni’s men can be rightfully confident ahead of their fixture against the group’s whipping boys and are priced at 1/14 to win.
Faroe Islands are yet to register a point in qualifying having lost all four of their matches. FIFA’s 162nd ranked team have only won three of their last 55 games and are rightfully priced at 25/1 to earn their first win since a 2-0 victory over Estonia in June 2011.
When skipper Robbie Keane takes to the field, he will surpass Shay Given’s 125 appearances and become Ireland’s most capped player of all-time. And such has been the longevity of the nippy forward’s goal-scoring prowess, it would not be surprising to see him mark the occasion with his 57th international goal Keane offers great value at 5/2 opens the scoring.
While the former Spurs man is the lynchpin of the Irish attack, there will be plenty of others on the pitch capable of threatening the Faroe Islands goal. Tenacious West Brom striker Shane Long netted a fantastic header against England recently and is 10/3 to score first this time, while Stoke man Jonathan Walters is 4/1.
The reverse fixture finished 4-1 and there could be plenty of value in backing the same scoreline at 14/1. Such has been the Faroe Islands’ abysmal form – they lost their last match 6-0 to Austria – that the handicap markets are definitely worth some consideration. Ireland -3 goals at 13/8 could be a good bet while -4 goals is 7/2.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.