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Greece vs Republic of Ireland predictions: Irish bidding to bounce back
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Daniel Childs
Republic of Ireland boss Stephen Kenny will feel his side need a result in Athens
Republic of Ireland boss Stephen Kenny will feel his side need a result in Athens

- Greece could only draw against Lithuania in March 
- The Republic have failed to win their last three competitive away games
- Recommended bet: Draw

Republic of Ireland's attempts to qualify for a first major tournament since Euro 2016 continue with a key match against Greece in Athens.

The Boys in Green kicked off Euro 2024 qualifying with a 1-0 loss at home to France although there were plenty of positives for head coach Stephen Kenny to take.

Ireland finished strongly against the World Cup runners-up and were denied an equaliser at the death by a superb Mike Maignan save.

However, they remain pointless and can ill-afford a hard luck story on Friday against the Greeks, who are likely rivals in the race for a top two finish.

Greece opened up their campaign with a straightforward 3-0 success away to Gibraltar.

Team news

Olympiakos winger Kostas Fortounis has been left out of the Greece squad despite featuring in both of the March fixtures away to Gibraltar and at home to Lithuania.

Ireland are boosted by the availability of Preston midfielder Alan Browne, who has shaken off a medial knee ligament injury.

Browne has been used as a right wing-back at international level and could deputise for Seamus Coleman, who misses out through a knee injury.

Chiedozie Ogbene (hamstring) is another Irish absentee.

The stats

Greece are unbeaten in their last five home games and have suffered just one defeat among their last 16 home fixtures.

The Greeks finished top of their 2022 Nations League section (Group C2), winning five and losing one of their six fixtures.

Ireland have failed to win any of their last three competitive away games.

However, they had scored in seven successive matches until a 1-0 loss at home to France at the start of Euro 2024 qualifying.

Stephen Kenny's side finished third in Nations League Group B1 after losing three of their six fixtures.


Gus Poyet's Greece are sure to be well organised
Gus Poyet's Greece are sure to be well organised

Ireland's trip to Greece had the feel of a must-win game for both teams, but they are evenly matched and might have to accept a share of the spoils.

No stone has been left unturned by Ireland, who have been on a nine-day training camp in Antalya, Turkey, in an effort to get acclimatised to the similar conditions they will face in the Greek capital.

The match is of huge importance to both teams due to the difficulty of the section they find themselves in.

Only the top two will qualify for Euro 2024 and that means Greece and Ireland must aim to finish above either France or the Netherlands.

Ireland were nowhere near in 2022 World Cup qualifying, finishing with two wins from eight games, and their hopes may depend on a breakthrough campaign for Brighton striker Evan Ferguson, who looks their most exciting forward player since Robbie Keane's retirement.

However, Ferguson is yet to open his international account and might not get many chances against a well-organised Greece side.

The Greeks won five of six Nations League matches and are a tough nut to crack on home soil with only one reverse, a 1-0 loss to Spain, over the last four years.

But they drew 0-0 at home to Lithuania in a March friendly and might struggle to get the better of a well-prepared Ireland side.


European ChampionshipGreeceIreland
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