Our prediction for this match:
Aviva Stadium will host Thursday’s football game between Republic of Ireland and New Zealand. The Boys in Green will use this friendly as a good preparation for the Euro 2020 qualifier against Denmark, but we believe that head coach Mick McCarthy is likely to rest key players. Since the experienced tactician should use this game to test as many players as possible, we do not believe that fans will see a high-scoring affair at Aviva Stadium.
The Whites, on the other hand, are undefeated in the previous seven games in all competitions ahead of the trip to Dublin. Considering that they look solid at the back, we believe that there is a big value in betting on under 2.5 goals. It has to be noted that the two teams have never met before in a friendly game.
Highlighted Player (Daniel Lafferty):
Daniel Lafferty is a Northern Ireland footballer who plays for Burnley. He signed a deal with Celtic in 2006, but was never handed a first-team debut for the Scottish giants. In 2010 he joined Derry City and it has to be noted that he scored seven goals in 46 appearances for the Irish outfit.
Two years later, on 30 January 2012, Lafferty signed contract with Burnley for an undisclosed fee. The left back made no more than one appearance for the Clarets in the 2014/2015 Premier League campaign and, as a result, he decided to join Rotherham United on a one-month loan in March, 2015. Seven months later he was sent on loan to Oldham Athletic and he played 15 matches for the League One club. Nonetheless, he returned to Burnley in 2016.
Daniel Lafferty made his Northern Ireland debut on 2 June, 2012 in a 6-0 defeat to Netherlands. However, he did not make the Northern Ireland roster for the Euro 2016 finals.
Highlighted Team (New Zealand):
New Zealand football national team qualified for the FIFA World Cup finals for the first time in 1982, with the team failing to advance to the knockout stages of the tournament. 28 years later the All Whites did well to make it to the World Cup in South Africa and Ricki Herbert’s men were playing above expectations at the showpiece tournament.
New Zealand did remarkably well to share the spoils with the likes of Slovakia, Italy and Paraguay in Group F, but they eventually failed to book their place in the last 16. The All Whites clinched OFC Nations Cup title on two occasions (1973, 2002), with the team beating Tahiti and Australia respectively in the title games. Speaking of the team’s biggest win, it has to be noted that they outclassed Fiji 13- 0 on August 16, 1981.
Back in 1936 New Zealand suffered a heavy 10-1 loss to Australia in front of home fans and that is considered the biggest defeat in the history of the national team. New Zealand play their home games at Westpac stadium and the capacity of the venue is 34.500.