This evening sees the start of the final round of games in the group stage of Euro 2016 qualifiers and after Ireland shocked the football world with their first ever triumph against current World Champions Germany on Thursday night they are right in the mix for an automatic spot in France next summer. They travel to Poland in the night’s biggest clash and we take a look at this game, as well as seeing if the Germans can bounce back on home soil and a Cristiano Ronaldo less Portugal can triumph against Serbia, with online sportsbook Betfair.com.
Poland v Ireland: 1.95 – 3.40 – 4.50
The biggest game in qualification for 2016 European Championships happening in France next summer comes from Group D as Poland and Ireland, who are locked on 18 points one point behind Germany at the top of the group, battle for the final automatic qualification place at the tournament. A home win or either of a 0-0 or 1-1 draw will see Poland claim second in the group while a draw of 2-2 or higher and/or an away win will see the Irish complete the second part of an outrageous comeback – after they defeated the world champions Germany 1-0 in Dublin on Thursday – to book their place at the Euros.
However, if the Irish are to upset the odds and defeat the Poles they will need to contain Bayern Munich hitman Robert Lewandowski who has netted 16 in 11 in all competitions for the German club this season and his two goals against Scotland, including an injury time leveller to see them not trail the Irish coming into this match, has seen him up to 12 in nine qualifiers to be the top striker in all of Europe.
While we believe that this match could end in any of the three ways and see either side book their place on the plane to France next summer, with so much at stake one of the most lethal strikers in Europe is sure to get the ball in the net for the home side during the match.
Our top Poland v Ireland tip is back Robert Lewandowski to score the first goal of the game @ 3.75 at Betfair.com.
Germany v Georgia: 1.06 – 15.00 – 66.00
Although they dominated possession in Dublin on Thursday night 72% to 28% it was the home side that took all three points and closed the gap at the top of Group D to just a single point between the Germans and the chasing pair that will be clashing this evening also. Germany now need to claim at least a point at the Red Bull Arena in Leipzig this Sunday evening to ensure that should Poland and Ireland share the spoils that they do not fall to third place in the group and have to come through a tricky playoff round.
Luckily for the Germans they have won three and draw one of their four home European Championship qualifiers so far in this campaign, with only the Irish preventing them from a clean sweep. They have managed just a single clean sheet in this run of matches too – with this coming against the group minnows Gibraltar – but with Georgia managing only to find the net against one of the newest sides in FIFA on their travels we can see why the bookmakers have the Germans such big favourites to win this game.
On paper this will be a comfortable win for the Germans and after the disappointment of losing their first ever competitive game to the Irish they will want to rediscover their coolness in front of goal and we can see plenty of goals in this game as well.
Back Germany to beat Georgia and +3.5 goals to be scored at odds of 1.75 in the Betfair Sportsbook!
Serbia v Portugal: 2.50 – 3.20 – 3.10
This Serbia v Portugal match from Group I is a dead rubber game as the Serbs cannot make the top three in the group and Portugal secured top spot on Thursday as João Moutinho struck in the 66th minute in Braga to defeat the Danes. Despite this we’re confident that both sides will want to end this campaign on a high note with all three points and as we saw a 2-1 home win for the Portuguese side in March we’re confident of goals too.
Serbia ended a four game losing streak in September with a 2-0 home win over Armenia before they triumphed 2-0 away at Albania during the week as Man City defender Aleksandar Kolarov and Inter Milan midfielder Adem Ljajić bagged injury time goals. Portugal have two clean sheets and wins in all of their three away games in the group with only Armenia managing to score against them but the Portuguese claimed all three points with a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick. We would be all for backing the Real Madrid star to score in this match, but with Portuguese manager Fernando Santos resting him along with Ricardo Carvalho and Tiago for this game our money is on those players brought in to bolster the squad to do the business as they aim to claim spots for the squad next summer.
Our money is on Portugal to beat Serbia @ 3.10 with Betfair.