Date: 2nd September 2021
Time: 12:15 AM IST
Venue: Estádio Algarve
News Updates: SportsTiger App
Portugal lock horns with Republic of Ireland in the ongoing FIFA World Cup Qualifiers on Thursday. Both the teams will be looking to grab the three points on offer to consolidate their position in the points table. The Portuguese are currently on the top spot in the standings of group A with seven points, while Ireland are in 4th position with no points as of yet.
Republic of Ireland
Ireland have a fully fit squad available.
The squad will have many of the players who participated in the European Championship. Star striker Cristiano Ronaldo has also been included in the squad. Notably, the newcomers to the national team are Porto midfielder Otavio, Sporting Lisbon defender Goncalo Inacio and Porto goalkeeper Diogo Costa.
Portugal reached the quarterfinals of Euro 2020, where they crashed out at the hands of Belgium after losing 1-0 in a hard-fought contest. Meanwhile, Ireland’s last game was a friendly against Hungary in June which finished in a goalless draw. Portugal will head into the game as the strong favourites as they have no shortage of attacking options with a power-packed forward line consisting of some of world’s best attackers.
Cristiano Ronaldo, Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Jota will be the key players for Portugal as the duo will be expected to create goal-scoring chance. Ronaldo will have a chance to become all-time men’s top scorer in international soccer. Currently, Ronaldo has 109 goals, joint topper alongside Iran striker Ali Daei. On the other hand, Connolly and Idah will carry the goalscoring threat for Ireland. As a result, these players can also be good captain and vice-captain choices for this match.
Probable Playing XI
Republic of Ireland:
Kelleher; Egan, Duffy, O’Shea; Doherty, Hendrick, Hourihane, Cullen, McClean; Connolly, Idah
Patricio; Cancelo, Pepe, Dias, Guerreiro; Pereira, Moutinho, Fernandes; B. Silva, Ronaldo, Jota
Defenders: Cancelo, Pepe, Dias, Guerreiro, Duffy
Midfielders: Fernandes; B. Silva, McClean, Hendrick, Hourihane
Forwards: Ronaldo, Jota, Connolly, Idah
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