class=”article_teaser__2t5do”>With plenty at stake for the visitors there should be serious interest in backing them to get among the goals when they visit the Irish capital

Republic of Ireland welcome Portugal to the Aviva Stadium on Thursday evening for their penultimate game in UEFA World Cup qualifying Group A.

It has been a disappointing campaign for Stephen Kenny’s men, who currently find themselves behind Luxembourg in the group and, with no hope of making the World Cup, the side will merely be out to try and restore some pride.

Portugal, meanwhile, have plenty on the line with Fernando Santos’ side desperate for a win to try and secure an automatic place at next year’s tournament.

Republic of Ireland vs Portugal latest odds

Portugal needed two goals in the last two minutes from Cristiano Ronaldo to salvage a 2-1 when they faced the Irish back in September and another success for the Euro 2016 champions is priced at 1/3 (1.33) with bet365.

Ireland, for their part, can be backed at 9/1 (10.00) with the draw at 15/4 (4.75).

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Republic of Ireland vs Portugal first goalscorer

Ronaldo is understandably the clear favourite break the deadlock, with the most prolific player in the history of men’s international football offered at 5/2 (3.50) to score first.

Liverpool forward Diogo Jota comes next in the betting at 9/2 (5.50), while Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix is available at 11/2 (6.50).

James Collins is the shortest priced Irish player to score first at 12/1 (13.00).

Republic of Ireland vs Portugal preview

Portugal have enjoyed an almost perfect record in World Cup qualifying over the last five years, winning 14 of their 15 matches.

Their only slip-up came in a 2-2 draw in Serbia in March, a result which is currently costing them top spot in Group A.

Nevertheless, it is still in Portugal’s hands to win the group which they will do if they beat Ireland and Serbia in their last two matches.

There is plenty of motivation therefore for Ronaldo and co and, against an out-of-sorts Ireland team who have nothing to play for, there should be plenty of interest in backing the visitors to get among the goals.

Republic of Ireland vs Portugal tips & predictions

Portugal are offered at 6/4 (2.50) to score over 2.5 goals something they have done in three of their last four matches, while in the last year Ireland have conceded three goals against the likes of both Serbia and England.

Odds correct at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.