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Ireland vs Belgium in an International Friendly on Mar 26. 2022 - Odds & Prediction

Ireland vs Belgium in an International Friendly on Mar 26. 2022 - Odds & Prediction

Although there was disappointment during Ireland’s World Cup qualifying campaign, there were some moments to also look back on with fondness and with manager Stephen Kenny recently being awarded a new contract, the country’s next generation is now being formed.

While that next generation will be offered a stern test this Saturday, as the might of Belgium come to the Aviva Stadium and if the Irish panel are to go through a learning curve, this could be a rather steep one.

MarketPrediction
To Win To NilBelgium
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Belgium To Win To Nil

Without discrediting the Irish national side in any shape or form, it is fair to say that Belgium could put out their second-string side on Saturday and still walk away from the Aviva Stadium unscathed.

Which is why looking at all the biggest betting sites has taken my attention into just one direction and although backing Belgium to win will not trouble the bookmakers all that much, I have something that will make them sweat.

Because with Ireland lacking anything in the way of genuine firepower, a Belgium win to nil seems a most likely outcome and if you want to join me in backing this outcome, you can currently get odds of 13/10 (LeoVegas).

Ireland Form, squad news, opinion

After suffering an embarrassing defeat to Luxembourg, the FAI would have been given every right to sack manager Stephen Kenny and especially as there was a huge clamour for them to do so.

However, loyalty is often forgotten within the confines of football and with the FAI ignoring the noise from supporters and pundits alike, they decided to stand by the man who replaced Mick McCarthy as Ireland manager.

While standing by has turned into something else in recent weeks and with Kenny also being awarded a new contract, he has been given the keys to Irish football's next generation of talent.

Talent that still has some way to go before it reaches the heights of the previous generation and although there is neither a Roy Keane nor Damien Duff within their ranks, there is no shortage of desire when pulling on the famous green journey.

Admittedly, Ireland will go into Saturday’s encounter with Belgium as outsiders but at the same time the experience will certainly serve them well and it will undoubtedly aid their quest for Euro 2024 qualification.

In terms of injuries and suspensions for the visit of Belgium, the talent pool might not be as big as it once was, but manager Stephen Kenny can still rely on experience this weekend and this will likely come in the shape of defender Seamus Coleman.

Belgium Form, squad news, opinion

There is no doubt that Belgium has a golden generation when it comes to their national team and although they have knocked on the door when it comes to success, they have yet to reach the promised land.

That though is not for the want of trying and after delivering Belgium to 3rd place in the 2018 World Cup, many felt that manager Roberto Martinez would be able to lead his charges to the European Championship last summer.

However, such hopes were dashed by eventual winners Italy and with the focus now switching to success in Qatar this winter, manager Martinez will use this Saturday’s trip to Ireland as an opportunity to put his superstars through their paces.

Especially as there are so many world-class talents available for Belgian selection and failure to show your ability on the international stage, means that somebody else will soon be given the opportunity instead.

While it is this level of competition that keeps the Belgian national side operating at such a high level and even though Saturday is only a friendly, you would imagine Roberto Martinez’s will compete at their usual high standards.

In terms of injuries and suspensions for the trip to Ireland, manager Roberto Martinez has an embarrassment of riches to call upon and with the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku on show, the pair will be just two of the many well-known faces on display.

History

When it comes to the history of these two sides, there is not a great deal of difference between the pair. With that being said, it is Belgium who just edge proceedings before Saturday’s meeting.

In terms of their overall head-to-head record, Ireland have won on 4 occasions, Belgium 6 and there have been 5 draws

About the Venue

After being built on the site of the former Lansdowne Road stadium, it is now the Aviva Stadium which takes its place and although the shape of the ground has changed considerably, the roar of the crowd is still just as loud.

With COVID-19 restrictions being lifted in Ireland, it means there is no longer the need to show a Vaccine Passport before attending the ground. Which means, match tickets are the only item that is required to be produced at the time of writing.

Conclusion

With it being an international friendly, it is always hard to get a true gauge on starting line-ups and this means that the pre-match odds in the 1x2 market. Although with that said, Belgium will be favourites to win regardless.

While at the same time, any bets you do place are better focused on the first 45 minutes. If only because, there will be a raft of substitutions in the second half, and this will hamper the flow of the game.

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