The neighbouring Irelands go head to head in a warm-up friendly ahead of their final UEFA Nations League matches

Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland lock horns in a friendly tussle in Dublin on Thursday as they each prepare for their concluding games in the UEFA Nations League.

Both sides have been on a poor run of form in 2018 and find themselves at the bottom of their Nations League groups, facing relegation to League C, the third tier of the new competition.

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Two defeats to Wales and a draw with Denmark mean that Martin O’Neill’s Boys in Green are at a low ebb and they will be eager to use the game against Michael O’Neill’s side as a springboard.

Northern Ireland, meanwhile, have suffered three defeats in Group 3 and their fate could well be decided before they meet Austria in Belfast on Sunday. Nevertheless, a win in Dublin would serve as a morale boost.

Game Republic of Ireland vs Northern Ireland
Date Thursday, November 15
Time 7:45pm GMT / 2:45pm ET

In the United States (US), the game can be streamed live online using ESPN+.

US TV channel Online stream

In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on TV via Sky Sports Football and it can be streamed live online using Sky Go.

UK TV channel Online stream
Sky Sports Football Sky Go

Position Republic of Ireland squad
Goalkeepers Randolph, Doyle, Kelleher
Defenders Coleman, Duffy, Christie, Keogh, Long, Stevens, Egan, Lenihan
Midfielders Whelan, McClean, Hendrick, Brady, Meyler, Arter, O’Dowda, Hourihane, Williams, Browne
Forwards Robinson, O’Brien, Maguire, Hogan, Curtis, Obafemi

Southampton striker Shane Long, Newcastle United’s Ciaran Clark and Burnley’s Stephen Ward are all ruled out due to injuries, while Wolves wing-back Matt Doherty was forced to withdraw from the squad with a facial injury.

A number of players could earn their first senior caps, with Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher, Southampton striker Michael Obafemi and Portsmouth forward Ronan Curtis pushing for inclusion.

Aston Villa midfielder Glenn Whelan is set to captain the team for his 85th – and potentially last – senior international appearance.

Potential Ireland XI: Randolph; Keogh, Duffy, Long; Brady, Coleman, Whelan, Arter, O’Dowda, McClean; Robinson.

Position Northern Ireland squad
Goalkeepers McGovern, Carson, Peacock-Farrell, Hazard
Defenders Hughes, McAuley, J. Evans, Cathcart, McLaughlin, McNair, Lewis, Smith, Flanagan, Burns
Midfielders Davis, McGinn, C. Evans, Ferguson, Dallas, Saville, Jones, Thompson, Whyte
Forwards Lafferty, Magennis, Ward, Boyce, Smyth, Vassell

Charlton Athletic attacker Jamie Ward and Aberdeen forward Niall McGinn have returned to the squad, as have Rangers duo Gareth McAuley and Kyle Lafferty, but there is no place for Will Grigg or Conor Washington.

Hearts defender Bobby Burns, who is currently on loan at Livingston, is the only uncapped player in the squad.

Potential Northern Ireland XI: Peacock-Farrell; Lewis, J. Evans, Cathcart, McNair; Saville, Davis, C. Evans, Dallas, Ward; Boyce.

Hosts Republic of Ireland are 5/4 favourites to win according to bet365, with Northern Ireland’s chances of victory rated at 3/1. A draw is available at 2/1.

Click here to see more offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more.

In the build-up to the game between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland both associations have been emphasising their recent good relations. Players from both sides visited a children’s hospital, administrators came together at a reception hosted by the Irish president and the match programme’s cover theme is respect. 

It is a stark contrast to past meetings between the sides, which have been overshadowed by manifold issues, with the backdrop of games in the 1980s and 1990s dominated by ongoing political tensions. More recently, the two associations butted heads over player eligibility rules, with the Irish Football Association (IFA) taking the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in 2010.

However, in spite of the cordial relations projected by the IFA and the FAI, the friendly game is still expected to have somewhat of an edge to it, with the presence of Northern Ireland-born players James McClean and Shane Duffy in the Republic of Ireland squad still a bone of contention for some fans.

The teams are currently perceived to be around the same level, but the Republic of Ireland have enjoyed greater head-to-head success, losing just once in their last eight encounters (winning four and drawing three), while Northern Ireland have scored just four goals overall in 10 games against their southern counterparts.

Nevertheless, the 2015 behind-closed-doors match between the teams, which finished 0-0, may give a better indication of the likely outcome.