After a cracking performance from the U21s last night, the attention is very much back on the senior team ahead of tomorrow's clash with Georgia. It is a place where Ireland have struggled in the past, and considering they held Denmark to a draw last month, we are expecting a tough test.
We are now very much down to the business end of the Euro 2020 Qualifiers. There are no easy games left for Ireland, with both meetings with Gibraltar now in the books. Three games remain: Georgia (A), Switzerland (A), Denmark (H).
While that is a difficult run of games, Ireland currently find themselves in a fantastic position in the group.
This gives us a very clear idea of what we must do to qualify for Euro 2020.
Winning all three games will obviously get us there, but it is unlikely we will need anywhere close to that points tally. It looks very likely that Ireland may need as little as four points from those three games.
Here's how we can qualify for Euro 2020.
Ireland need to beat Georgia tomorrow afternoon, that much is certain. That will be no easy task, especially when you consider how the Danes got on in Tbilisi last month. Still, while Ireland have put in some questionable performances against the Georgians over the years, they have only failed to beat them once in their 10 meetings.
A few hours after that game in Tbilisi, Denmark and Switzerland will face off in Copenhagen. The best result for Ireland here would be a Switzerland win, but a draw would also be satisfactory.
Those two drew earlier in the group, but it was a lucky result for Denmark. They scored three times in the final seven minutes to rescue an undeserved draw. You would think the Swiss will come away from Copenhagen with at least a point, especially as they are now under pressure themselves.
If Ireland beat Georgia, and Denmark draw with Switzerland, Ireland would be four points ahead of the Danes with two games to play. Switzerland would be one point further back, but with a game in hand.
Ireland face a daunting trip to Geneva to take on Switzerland on Tuesday evening. However with the way results have gone, a loss here would not be disastrous for Mick McCarthy's side.
As long as Denmark fail to beat Switzerland, a defeat would not be the end of the world here for Ireland.
Denmark will only play one game in October. Even accounting for a loss for Ireland, they are still in a good position.
Ireland will not play in this round of games, taking place on November 15th. Switzerland host Georgia, while Denmark host Gibraltar.
You can expect wins for both side.
If everything goes as expected it will all come down to this, with two games taking place on November 18th. Switzerland go to Gibraltar, so you can mark down three points for them.
Ireland host Denmark in what will be a huge clash. In our expected scenario, Ireland would sit one point ahead of the Danes.
If that were the case they would only need a draw to win. You would expect Mick McCarthy to get it, even if we know how dangerous the Danes can be. That should be enough to bring us to the Euros.
Possible final table:
The scenario suggested above is certainly in play. Ireland need to beat Georgia, and failing to do so would be a disaster.
If Denmark fail to beat Switzerland (which seems likely), Ireland wouldn't need to get anything in Switzerland.
Even if Denmark do defeat the Swiss, it just requires Ireland to beat the Danes on the final day of the campaign (if Ireland lose to Switzerland).
- Ireland beat Georgia
- Denmark don't beat Switzerland
- Ireland get a draw or better at home to Denmark