Portugal tackle Ireland in their final World Cup warm-up match and, amid mounting injury concerns in their attacking ranks, they’ll bolster their confidence by inflicting a bagel on the underdogs.
Cristiano Ronaldo won’t be on hand to give Martin O’Neill’s men the run around in New York, but the match-betting stakes are fairly cut and dried regardless, with 67/100 the price for Portuguese victory in the face of 17/4 about Ireland to do the same.
The draw is worth a wager at 5/2, but the 17/20 saying that Os Navegadores will keep a clean sheet is where the smart money is going.
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The firm will reward you with a £30 free bet that could turn a steady £25.50 profit if Ireland don’t call the scoreboard operator into action here.
Here are three reasons why they won’t:
Four of Portugal’s last six foes have all failed to find the back of the net.
This quartet includes both of their pre-tournament kick-abouts to date against Mexico and Greece, with Sweden and Luxembourg making up the numbers earlier in the year.
A meagre three goals have been shipped in total across this string of matches and Paulo Bento’s outfit won all bar one of these.
The Republic haven’t struck more than once in any of their last five outings.
To those familiar with his club level exploits, it won’t come as much of a surprise to read that O’Neill’s initiation into international management hasn’t sparked a surge of goals amongst the Green Army.
The 3-0 toppling of Latvia which came in his first fixture at the helm has been followed by five failures to win, with the team unable to find the back of the net against Italy and Poland recently.
Ireland have bagged just three goals in their most recent eight meetings with World Cup participants.
Much like their latest five matches, when the men from the Emerald Isle have rustled the net, the goals have come in batches of one, meaning five of those involved in this summer’s samba jamboree have been able to successful stymie the Irish.