It has been over 30 years since Northern Ireland last qualified for the World Cup and they will be hoping to end that run by reaching Russia next year. As things stand in UEFA World Cup qualifying Group C, Northern Ireland are in second place in the group with 16 points to their name. Germany top the group with 21 points having won all 7 of their matches, making top spot out of reach.
World Cup Qualifiers – Monday 4th September – 19:45 UK Time
Best Odd of: 9/5 at Sky Bet
Best Odd of: 9/4 at Ladbrokes
Best Odd of: 7/4 at 10Bet
Northern Ireland’s opponents in this match are Czech Republic. The Czech’s are third in Group C on 9 points and anything other than a win will make it impossible for them to finish in second place.
Northern Ireland Form
Northern Ireland come into this match on the back of a 3-0 win in San Marino. It was a match they were expected to win comfortably and they did so in the end but were forced to wait until the 70th minute to get the breakthrough goal.
That win in San Marino means it is now 4 straight wins for Northern Ireland, with 3 coming in World Cup qualifying and the other in a friendly against New Zealand. Northern Ireland kept a clean sheet in each of those 4 games.
At home, Northern Ireland have won their last 4 World Cup qualifying games and have not conceded a goal. Going back to the 2016 European Championship qualifying matches, Northern Ireland are unbeaten in their last 7 home competitive games.
Czech Republic Form
The Czech Republic looked set to claim a good point at home to Germany in their previous World Cup qualifying match before Mats Hummels struck with the winning goal late in the game. The Czech’s will need to recover from that setback quickly and focus on this game.
Czech Republic have failed to win any of their last 3 games, with a friendly defeat in Belgium and a draw in Norway prior to the Germany defeat.
However, their away World Cup qualifying record is decent and they have lost only 2 of their last 11 away qualifying matches.
Northern Ireland do not have any injury or suspension concerns ahead of this match and Michael O’Neill may name the same starting XI from the San Marino game. That would see another start in attack for Charlton forward Josh Magennis.
Czech Republic put in a good display against Germany and were unfortunate to lose in the final minutes. Therefore, Karel Jarolim may also stick with the same starting XI from that match.
Top Betting Tips
Northern Ireland like to play in a way which makes them difficult to beat. Their results are based on keeping a clean sheet and if they are to win this match, there is a good chance it will be without conceding a goal.
You can get 16/5 with Ladbrokes for Northern Ireland to win the game to nil, which is tempting.
Czech Republic must win this match, so expect them to pile men forward close to the end of the match if they are not winning. This could leave opportunities for Northern Ireland to score on the break and seal the win.
Northern Ireland to win 1-0 is 11/2 with Ladbrokes and the time of the first goal to be scored between 71-80 minutes is 11/1 with Ladbrokes.