Can Ireland qualify for Euro 2008?

The Republic of Ireland football team have been struggling of late. We got off to a shocking start to our European qualifiers with a 5-2 trashing at the hands of Cyprus and a loss to Germany. We have stabilised things somewhat recently, with four straight wins. However, impressive as that sounds, three of those games were at home and two were against San Marino. We still have a mountain to climb in order to qualify. I am sticking my neck out to try and predict what will happen next. What follows is an exercise in wishful thinking! 

(I wrote the above back in June…this is the updated table, after Saturday 8th Sept.)

Table Now                P    W    D    L    F    A    GD    PTS
1    Germany             8    6     1     0     31   4    27      22
2    Czech Republic   8    4     2     1     18   4    14      17
3    Rep of Ireland     8    4     1     2     14   10    4        14
4    Slovakia              8    3     0     4     18   15   3       10
5    Wales                 7   2     1     3      8    11    -3        7
6    Cyprus                7    1     1     4      10    16   -6       7
7    San Marino         8    0     0     6      1    40   -35     0

 

22/08/07  San Marino  1 v 3  Cyprus: Plucky San Marino hold Cyprus for much of the game even grabbing a shock equaliser before half-time, but Cypriot fitness tells in the final 20 minutes. (UPDATE: Cyprus managed a 1-0 win in the end)

08/09/07: San Marino  0 v 4  Czech Republic, Wales  0 v 1  Germany, Slovakia  1 v 1  Republic of Ireland:  Ireland survive a late onslaught to grab a valuable away point. Wales are just too weak to hold off a confident Germany. (UPDATE 9th Sept.: San Marino lost 3-0, Wales lost 2-0, and Ireland drew 2-2 with Slovakia, so my predictions remain the same – Ireland to qualify by a hair’s breath.)

12/09/07 Czech Republic  1 v 0  Republic of Ireland, Slovakia  2 v 1  Wales, Cyprus  2 v 0  San Marino: The Czechs score a valuable win against a poor Irish team, Slovakia get back in the hunt with a win over Wales at home, while San Marino lose again to Cyprus.

13/10/07 Republic of Ireland  1 v  0  Germany, Cyprus  2 v 0  Wales, Slovakia  4 v 0  San Marino: On a day when the Czechs don’t play, Ireland stun the group with a tremendous win over Germany. The Germans are suitably unruffled, having done enough to secure qualification already. Cyprus continue a good campaign with a win over a faltering Wales.

17/10/07 Germany  2 v 1  Czech Republic, Republic of Ireland  2 v 1  Cyprus, San Marino  1 v 3  Wales: Germany are back to their confident best at home by defeating an ageing Czech team. The Irish gain revenge for earlier humiliations against Cyprus, but it is a close thing.

17/11/07 Czech Republic  2 v 2  Slovakia, Germany  3 v 1  Cyprus, Wales  1 v 2  Republic of Ireland: Close rivals Slovakia and Czech Republic battle to an exciting draw while Ireland continue to climb with an impressive and solid display against a dispirited Wales team in Cardiff.

21/11/07 Cyprus  1 v 1  Czech Republic, Germany  2 v 0  Wales, San Marino  1 v 4  Slovakia: The Czechs need three points for qualification but Cyprus at home are a tough nut to crack. Slovakia leave it too late to qualify with their late win against San Marino.

FINAL TABLE?
21 Nov 2007
                                P    W    D    L    F     A    GD    PTS
1    Germany            12   10   1    1    37     7    30    31
3    Rep of Ireland    12   7    2    3    18    12     6     23
2    Czech Republic  12   6    4    2    24     9     15    22
4    Slovakia             12   6    2    4    29    18    11    20
6    Cyprus               12   4    2    6    19    23    -4    14
5    Wales                12   3    1    8    13    19    -6    10
7    San Marino        12   0    0    12    4    56    -52    0

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1 Comment

  1. September 12, 2007 at 10:27 pm

    […] 12th, 2007 at 10:27 pm (Uncategorized) I made some predictions back in June. Still on course! But, honestly, it looks like a big ask now, so I am not holding my breath. But, so […]


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