How to Watch Wales vs. Ireland

Modesto Morganelli
Ottobre 11, 2017

Of the teams now in the play-offs, only Northern Ireland, Denmark, Ireland, Italy and Croatia have secured their places.

Of the play-off teams, Italy are above NI in the rankings and with Denmark set to go to 1001 points, calculations suggest they will move above NI as well. Unlikely, but still possible. Portugal or Switzerland from Group B are both well above NI in the rankings too.

Northern Ireland is officially in the thick of play-off mania.

All will become clear who the Republic will take on when the play-off draw for Russian Federation is made next Tuesday, but whoever they face, Meyler is confident Martin O'Neil's side will be joining England at the tournament next summer.

However, for the purposes of this idle slice of sporting speculation, let's say Ireland defeat Wales in Cardiff and the Ukraine and Croatia draw putting Slovakia through. Only a Netherlands win (by less than seven goals) will be the result Northern Ireland need. Republic of Ireland and Serbia are both below NI in the rankings.

However, the Federation Internationale de Football Association world rankings are updated later this month, after which the seeded teams will be selected, meaning it could be tight between Denmark and Sweden. So only a narrow (ish) Sweden defeat will do for NI.

Group B: Portugal or Switzerland.

Ireland edged out Wales in Group D for a spot in the play-offs thanks to a second-half strike from West Brom midfielder James McClean.

At the moment, Northern Ireland would just squeak into the seedings.

As only eight teams go from the nine groups, Slovakia will miss out with the lowest points tally of all the second-placed sides.

If both matches produce a victor, then Slovakia, the runners-up in Group F, will be eliminated as worst runners-up.

The two most important games in this equation, by a distance, are on Monday night - Ukraine against Croatia in Kiev and Wales against the Republic in Cardiff.

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