Within the next few weeks, we will finally know what the full field for Euro 2020 will look like.
That’s because the play-offs will have been completed, with straight elimination matches determining the semi-final and final winners within the space of a week.
In Path B, Slovakia and the Republic of Ireland will meet in one semi-final, and then Bosnia and Herzegovina and Northern Ireland will meet in the other, with the winner of those two games colliding in the final.
The stakes could not be higher for Bosnia and Northern Ireland, who know that the final of Path B will be held in either Zenica or Belfast, depending on who wins here. That would give them a major advantage heading into the all-important match.
So, there’s plenty at stake in this encounter on March 26, which will also be played in the Bosnian city.
Their end goal? A place in Group E of Euro 2020, where they would be paired with Spain, Sweden and Poland.
So how do we see the action panning out here? Let’s take a look in our Bosnia & Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland predictions.
1. Northern Ireland vs Bosnia and Herzegovina Betting Odds
It will come as no surprise that the hosts have been given favouritism in the bookmakers’ Northern Ireland vs Bosnia and Herzegovina betting odds, with the Bosnians available to bet on at 1.75.
Northern Ireland have been priced at 3.90 by the sportsbooks, with the draw available at 3.50.
Remember, those odds relate to the 90-minute match market only. If you want some added security, you can bet on your preferred team in the ‘To Qualify’ market, which accounts for extra time and/or penalties. Here, Bosnia are priced at 1.40 and Ireland at 2.75.
2. Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland Preview
This is an all or nothing, winner takes all football match, and the pressure could not be greater.
Both Bosnia and Northern Ireland have experience of the play-offs process. The Bosnians lost out to the Republic of Ireland in the play-off for a Euro 2016 spot, while the Northern Irish fell at the final hurdle for a place at World Cup 2018 at the hands of Switzerland.
In qualifying for Euro 2020, Bosnia’s campaign was rather strange to say the least.
In ten games, they scored a fantastic 20 goals but also conceded 17, which may have bee entertaining to watch for the neutral but ended Bosnia’s hopes of qualifying automatically. In the end, they lost against Italy (twice), Finland, Greece and Armenia, which is hardly earth-shattering form going into this crunch game.
They have experienced, top quality campaigners in Edin Dzeko, Miralem Pjanic and Asmir Begovic, but a lack of quality in defence continues to inhibit them.
As for Northern Ireland, they were in the same qualification group with Germany and the Netherlands, so finishing inside the top two was always going to be difficult.
But they did exactly what they needed to in dominating Belarus and Estonia, and that – allied to a 0-0 draw with the Dutch – was enough to give them the points haul necessary to qualify for the play-offs.
This Northern Irish squad is not blessed with quality, but they do have an ability to play at a level that is greater than the sum of their parts.
In this Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland preview, we have to reflect on two evenly-matched teams with strengths and weaknesses in abundance.
3. Northern Ireland vs Bosnia and Herzegovina Betting Tips
Despite the hosts’ penchant for goals in qualifying, our Northern Ireland vs Bosnia and Herzegovina betting tips have to focus on the fact that this will be a tight and risk-free match.
The Irish won’t come to attack – their modus operandi will be a 1-0 victory, and Bosnia are not blessed with pace nor a creative outlet in attack.
But the Bosnians have quality operators in their side, and you suspect on home soil that will be enough to see them through. We’re backing Bosnia to win 1-0 and 2-0 at odds of 5.50 and 7.50 respectively.
4. Bosnia vs Northern Ireland Live Stream
If you want to watch a Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland live stream, help might just be at hand.
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