Northern Ireland v Switzerland Betting Preview | 9th November
In our Northern Ireland v Switzerland betting preview we look at team news, potential line-ups, stats & facts, head-to-head, popular bets and more for Thursday’s World Cup play-off first leg.
Northern Ireland v Switzerland Betting Preview
Venue: Windsor Park
Michael O’Neill is looking to steer Northern Ireland into their first World Cup finals since 1986 as they face Switzerland on Thursday night in the first of two crucial playoff legs.
Switzerland, featuring Stoke City’s Xherdan Shaqiri and Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka, narrowly missed out of automatic qualification after a 2-0 defeat to Portugal.
Despite that defeat, the Swiss had an impressive qualification record, winning all of their other nine matches.
The Green and White Army have never been involved in the playoff qualifiers before and will be hoping to take a home victory into Sunday’s return leg.
Sunderland’s Paddy McNair has earned a call-up after recently returning from an 11-month cruciate ligament injury.
Nottingham Forest striker Jamie Ward is also back in contention after being out since March with a calf injury.
Aaron Hughes joins McNair and Ward in the squad although it looks unlikely that he will start.
The Swiss will be without defender Johan Djourou and midfielder Valon Behrami with the pair suffering from knee and thigh problems respectively.
Potential Northern Ireland Starting XI: McGovern, Brunt, J. Evans, McAuley, McLaughlin, Davis, C. Evans, Dallas, Norwood, Magennis, Washington.
Potential Switzerland Starting XI: Sommer, Rodriguez, Lacroix, Schar, Lichtsteiner, Xhaka, Freuler, Mehmedi, Shaqiri, Dzemaili, Seferovic.
Head To Head
- Northern Ireland and Switzerland have met on four previous occasions, with the Irish winning twice, drawing once and losing twice.
- Both of Northern Ireland’s victories against the Swiss came on home soil.
Stats & Facts
- Northern Ireland kept an impressive seven clean sheets during qualification, with only England (8) keeping more.
- Captain Steven Davis is set to make his 100th international appearance.
Northern Ireland – 5/2, Draw – 21/10, Switzerland – 5/4
- Northern Ireland to win 1-0 – 7/1
- Switzerland to win both halves – 7/1
- Xherdan Shaqiri to score first and Switzerland to win 2-0 – 55/1