Both sides will be desperately seeking a win as they look to keep their hopes of reaching Russia in 2018 alive
Wales welcome the Republic of Ireland to Cardiff on Monday as both teams attempt to secure a place in the World Cup play-off round.
Chris Coleman’s Dragons come into the game one point ahead of the Boys in Green in second place and the winner of the game has a chance of progressing to the play-offs depending on results elsewhere. A draw could be enough for Wales, but Ireland must win if they want to have any hope of reaching the tournament in Russia next year.
Theoretically, automatic qualification is still a possibility for both sides, but that will ultimately depend on leaders Serbia slipping up at home to Georgia.
|Game||Wales vs Republic of Ireland|
|Date||Monday, October 9|
|Time||19:45 BST / 14:45 ET|
TV CHANNEL & LIVE STREAM
In the UK, the game will be available to watch live on television on Sky Sports Football, as well as being available to stream live using Sky Go. Viewers in Wales will be able to watch live on the Welsh language channel S4C or online using the Watch S4C facility.
Viewers in Ireland can watch the game live on RTE 2 or online via the RTE Player.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|Sky Sports Football / S4C||Sky Go / S4C|
In the US, the game will broadcast live on television on FS2 and it will also be available to stream online using Fox Sports GO or Fox Soccer Match Pass.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
|FS2||Fox Sports GO / Match Pass|
SQUADS & TEAM NEWS
|Goalkeepers||Hennessey, Ward, Maxwell|
|Defenders||Gunter, A. Williams, Taylor, Davies, Chester, Lockyer|
|Midfielders||Ledley, Ramsey, Edwards, King, Allen, J. Williams, Lawrence, Ampadu|
|Forwards||Vokes, Robson-Kanu, Woodburn, Bradshaw, Hedgews, Brooks|
Wales must attempt to beat Ireland without the services of Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale, who is ruled out with a calf injury. They will also be without West Ham defender James Collins and Swansea City’s Jazz Richards.
Potential starting XI: Hennessey; Gunter, A. Williams, Chester, Davies; King, Ledley, Allen, Ramsey, Lawrence; Vokes.
|Position||Republic of Ireland players|
|Goalkeepers||Randolph, Elliot, Doyle|
|Defenders||O’Shea, Ward, Clark, Duffy, Keogh, Christie, Long|
|Midfielders||McGeady, Whelan, McClean, Hoolahan, Brady, Hendrick, Meyler, Arter, O’Dowda, Hourihane|
|Forwards||Murphy, Hogan, Maguire|
Ireland are boosted by the return of Robbie Brady and James McClean, who missed the game against Moldova through suspension, but Shane Long has been ruled out through injury.
James McCarthy has been training with the squad but played no part in the game against Moldova. However, he could potentially feature on the bench in Cardiff. Jonathan Walters is missing due to a knee injury, while Seamus Coleman is still unavailable as he recovers from a broken leg.
Potential starting XI: Randolph; Ward, Clark, Duffy, Christie; Meyler, Brady, Hendrick, McClean, Hoolahan; Murphy.
BETTING & MATCH ODDS
Wales have not suffered a competitive defeat at home in over four years and they are 5/4 favourites to win according to dabblebet. There are odds of 5/2 attached to an Ireland victory, while a draw is priced at 11/5.
Wales and Ireland played out a tempestuous 0-0 draw when they met in Dublin earlier this year in a game which was marred by Seamus Coleman’s horrendous leg-break and with the stakes high, the stage is set for another tense affair in Cardiff.
Chris Coleman said in the lead-up to the match that he is expecting “a hell of a game” and Ireland boss Martin O’Neill issued a rallying cry following his side’s victory over Moldova on Friday, knowing that nothing less than a win will suffice.
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Interestingly, Coleman’s men are the only team in Group C that have yet to taste defeat in qualifying but, despite their impressive home record, they face a much more difficult task without the world-class ability of their talisman Bale.
Ireland, of course, are without their captain Seamus Coleman and they are also bereft of Jonathan Walters’ inspirational presence, but the absence of the Real Madrid forward serves as a tremendous boost to their chances nonetheless.
With Bale out of the picture, the teams are fairly evenly matched in terms of personnel so it is sure to be a tight game and, with the play-offs on the horizon, both managers will be hopeful that tempers do not boil over as they did in their last meeting.