At the Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena stadium in Tbilisi, the Italian Guida, will referee the match between Georgia and Ireland scheduled at 17.00 (ora locale)
Georgia enters the field knowing that a defeat, in addition to the results of the other fields, could officially bury its hopes of qualification. Winning only against the modest Gibraltar, in the first five games of the group, means that his path will be uphill regardless of today’s result.
The Georgians must improve their terrible record on Ireland, which has seen them miss victory in 11 matches (1 draw, 10 defeats). They still scored the first goal in eight of their last 12 games (6 wins, 3 draws, 3 losses) and won the first half in five of their last eight home wins.
Ireland is leading the Group D after five games (3 wins, 2 draws) and was defeated only once in the previous 11 international matches. Half of them were frustrating draws, all 0-0 or 1-1. In the last three games of the group, Mick McCarthy’s team has scored in the last five minutes.
Not too many goals are expected based on Ireland’s recent record, as only four of his last 22 fights have produced over 2.5 goals, two of which were defeats.
Players to watch:
Georgia midfielder Valeri Qazaishvili scored four goals in his last seven home victories, three of which came between the 31st and 35th minute. Irish midfielder Conor Hourihane scored twice in the last three appearances for the Aston Villa club and scored the winning goal when he faced Georgia last time in March.
- Ireland’s last three victories over Georgia have all been scored 1-0.
- Georgia failed to score in six of its last eight defeats.
- Only three of Ireland’s last nine away games have seen both teams score.
Ireland (4-3-3): Randolph; Coleman, O’Shea, Keogh, Ward; Hendrick, Whelan, Brady; Walters, McClean, Long. Coach: Martin O’Neil
Georgia (4-2-3-1): Loria; Lobjanidze, Kvirkvelia, Okriashvili, Navalovski; Kashia, Daushvili; Jighauri, Ananidze, Qazaishvili; Dvalishvili. Coach: Vladimir Weiss