World Cup qualifier: Northern Ireland v Israel match preview

A look ahead to tonight’s World Cup Qualifier at Windsor Park, Belfast

Elizabeth Foss
Tuesday 26 March 2013 17:44
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A view of the conditions at Windsor Park
A view of the conditions at Windsor Park

Michael O’Neill’s Northern Ireland welcome Israel to Windsor Park tonight after arctic weather conditions threatened to disrupt play.

After failing to secure a win in their previous four games of the qualifiers, Northern Ireland will be looking for a win tonight to remain in contention for second place with both Israel and Portugal.

Despite never beating Northern Ireland in their previous seven international meetings, Israel will be confident of a win after narrowly missing out on a win against Euro 2012 semi-finalists, Portugal, last week.

Hull City midfielder, Corry Evans, has been called up to the Northern Ireland squad after recovering from injury earlier this month.

A win for Israel tonight would take them within one point of group leaders Russia and put them in good stead for their remaining fixtures.

KICK-OFF: Tonight, 7.45pm

PAST THREE MEETINGS…

Northern Ireland 1 (McCann) Israel 1 (Barda), International, 2009/2010

Israel 1 Northern Ireland 1, International, 1986/1987

Northern Ireland 3 Israel 0, International, 1984/1985

STATS…

Tomer Hemed has scored six goals in last four games, with a hatrick against Luxembourg.

No Northern Ireland player has scored more than a single goal in the previous four fixtures.

Northern Ireland are without a win in 12 international fixtures.

Edin Dzeko is the only other player who has scored more than Hemed in the tournament so far with a total of seven goals.

ODDS…

Northern Ireland to win: 3.35

Israel to win: 3.35

Draw: 2.48

TV: Live on Sky Sports 3 at 7.45pm, highlights on BBC One 11:15 PM.

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