Kick-off: 1945, 18/11/2020
Stadium: Aviva Stadium
TV: Sky Sports
Republic of Ireland will be battling to avoid relegation from Nations League Group B4 when facing fellow strugglers Bulgaria in Dublin on Wednesday.
The men in green are a point above their opponents and only need a draw to stay up, but we’re backing them to claim a morale-boosting victory.
We reckon 7/5 for a home win to nil is the way to go with our first Republic of Ireland vs Bulgaria prediction.
A Look At Republic of Ireland’s Betting Odds
They are without a win in seven matches under new boss Stephen Kenny and had Jeff Hendrick sent off in stoppage time in Cardiff on Sunday to compound their misery.
Hopes of making it to the rescheduled Euro 2020 finals via the play-offs have gone up in smoke, while their presence among the second pot of seeds for the forthcoming World Cup qualifiers is now in severe jeopardy.
However, there were some brighter signs early on versus Wales, with Burnley midfielder Robbie Brady going close to breaking the deadlock.
Brady is convinced Kenny will come good, stating: “It’s been really positive since he’s come in; he’s put his ideas across to us and the lads have bought into it. It’s been good.
“We’ve been creating chances – obviously the goals haven’t come yet, but if we score a few, it’s a different scenario.
“There are definitely positives to take from it and once everyone is pushing in the right direction, I’m sure there will be good times ahead.”
Injuries and positive coronavirus tests have severely depleted this squad in the last two camps, but this is still an excellent opportunity to begin the fightback.
Getting off to a good start would boost confidence and allow Ireland to then play a possession game.
Looking at the Republic of Ireland vs Bulgaria odds, we’re keen on 3/2 for the hosts to be ahead at half-time and full-time.
A Look At Bulgaria’s Betting Odds
Bulgaria have slipped to four straight defeats in this pool since opening up with a 1-1 draw against Ireland in Sofia.
Wales beat them 1-0 twice, while Finland prevailed 2-0 in Helsinki last month and 2-1 at Vasil Levski National Stadium over the weekend.
The Lions trailed 2-0 at the break on Sunday and only pulled one back through a Dimitar Iliev penalty on 68 minutes.
Iliev also netted in last Wednesday’s 3-0 friendly win over Gibraltar, but Bulgaria have struggled in competitive contests for some time.
They were thrashed 6-0 and 4-0 by England in a Euro 2020 qualifying group before going down 3-1 at home to Hungary in a play-off.
The absence of former Aston Villa winger Aleksandar Tonev has left the current squad with just 14 international goals between them.
A single strike may be enough to settle this, so 5/1 for a 1-0 home win is added to our Republic of Ireland vs Bulgaria betting tips, with Brady a tempting 15/2 to grab the opening goal.
Wales 1-0 REPUBLIC OF IRELAND
BULGARIA 1-2 Finland – Dimitar Iliev (pen)
Head-to-head: Bulgaria 1-1 Ireland, Ireland 3-1 Bulgaria, Bulgaria 1-1 Ireland, Ireland 1-1 Bulgaria
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