Northern Ireland v Austria Betting Tips & Predictions – Sunday 18th November 2018

Michael O’Neill’s Northern Ireland face Franco Foda’s Austria at Windsor Park in a UEFA Nations League match on Sunday. League B, Group 3 is done and dusted already, with Norn Iron relegated to League C whereas Bosnia Herzegovina have been promoted to League A. Meanwhile, the Austrians will stay in League B regardless of the outcome at the weekend.

N Ireland have had a disappointing Nations League campaign so far, but they will be hoping to bow out of League B with a win in Belfast on Sunday. The Austrians head to Northern Ireland’s capital as favourites, but don’t rule out O’Neill’s Green and White Army just yet. There may be nothing at stake in this one, but we’re still anticipating an entertaining encounter.

Top Tips

Austria to Win 1-0 @ 6/1

Austria to Win to Nil @ 12/5

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Northern Ireland News: Irish in Poor Form

Northern Ireland Footballer Celebrating Goal
deargdoom57, flickr (Image Cropped)

Northern Ireland warmed up for their final Nations League B, Group 3 game with a hard-fought draw with rivals Republic of Ireland in Dublin on Thursday. In a pretty forgettable 90 minutes at the Aviva Stadium, Norn Iron battled to a 0-0 draw in the Republic. To be fair to O’Neill’s men, they dominated large parts of the game, with Ireland goalkeeper Darren Randolph being the standout player. Although the draw was decent result, N Ireland have now won just one of their last seven matches in all competitions. The Green and White Army could certainly do with a victory on Sunday to stop the rot.

Disastrous Nations League Campaign So Far

Northern Ireland kicked off their Nations League campaign with a disappointing home defeat to Bosnia back in September. The Bosnians took a first half lead thanks to a goal by Haris Duljevic before doubling their lead when Elvis Saric scored shortly after the hour mark. Norn Iron huffed and puffed, with Will Grigg scoring a consolation goal in the 93rd minute in the eventual 2-1 defeat. The Irish followed that up with a narrow loss in Austria, with West Ham United’s Marko Arnautovic scoring the only goal of the game at the Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna.

Austria News: Austrians Staying Put in League B

Austria's Ernst Happel Stadion Football Stadium
Peter Gugerell, Wikimedia Commons

Austria failed to close the gap on League B, Group 3 leaders Bosnia, being held to a 0-0 home draw on Thursday. Neither side really did enough to win it, with Arnautovic squandering Austria’s best chance as he blazed over the bar late on. The point was enough to promote Bosnia to League A and leave Austria battling away in League B. Prior to Thursday’s goalless draw, the Austrians had started their campaign with a 1-0 defeat to Bosnia in Zenica back in September, with former Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko scoring in a 1-0 victory for the hosts. However, Foda’s side hit back with a 1-0 win over Northern Ireland in Vienna. Austria will want to finish the group with three points on Sunday.

Austria Looking to Get Back to Winning Ways

From October 2017 to June 2018, Austria won seven games in a row, beating the likes of Uruguay, Russia and Germany along the way. Since then, however, the Austrians have lost three of their last six, winning just two of those. Having lost to Denmark in a friendly before drawing 0-0 with Bosnia, Austria will be gunning for their first win this weekend since beating N Ireland back in October.

West Ham Man a Danger to Norn Iron

As we mentioned, Arnautovic scored in Austria’s 1-0 win over N Ireland a couple of months back, and the attacker has been in good form for the Hammers in the Premier League this season. Arnautovic is without doubt Austria’s danger man, and he will pose a real threat to the home team throughout. O’Neill’s defenders will have to be at their best to foil the West Ham ace on Sunday.

Analysis: Away Side to Prove Too Strong in Belfast

Northern Ireland have not had too much luck during their first Nations League campaign, and this weekend’s match will unquestionably be enough tough test for the Irish. Norn Iron are capable of causing an upset on home soil, but Austria could be too strong for O’Neill’s boys in Belfast. Our money is going on a narrow win for the away team.

A Repeat Scoreline

One goal was enough to give Austria all three points when they last met, and we could be in for a similar outcome on Sunday. If you fancy history to repeat itself, have a punt on the visitors to win 1-0, which you can get at the tempting odds of 6/1.

Another Clean Sheet for the Visitors

Austria have kept clean sheets in five of their last six victories. Foda has a strong defence at his disposal, with the likes of Aleksandar Dragovic and David Alaba stalwarts at the back. Meanwhile, Northern Ireland have failed to register in each of their last three. With that in mind, put some money on Austria to win to nil at the weekend at 12/5.

Austrians to Score First on Sunday

Since coming from behind to beat Serbia 3-2 in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier back in October 2017, Austria have scored the opening goal in six of their last seven victories. The Austrians are priced at 4/6 to open the scoring in Belfast on Sunday.

Recent Matches

Austria have a pretty good record over N Ireland of late, winning two and drawing one of the last three meetings. In fact, the Irish have not beaten the Austrians since November 1995, when Michael O’Neill (2), Iain Dowie, Barry Hunter and Philip Gray were on the scoresheet in a 5-3 win in a UEFA Euro 1996 qualifier in Belfast.

12th October 2018: Austria 1 – 0 Northern Ireland

When these two met at the Ernst-Happel-Stadion in the reverse fixture back in October, Austria edged a tight game in Vienna. Northern Ireland missed some decent chances, with West Ham’s Arnautovic making them pay in the second period. Arnautovic sneaked past the defence to score past Bailey Peacock-Farrell in the Irish goal to give the Austrians a 1-0 win.

12th October 2005: Austria 2 – 0 Northern Ireland

David Healy was punished for missing two good opportunities as Rene Aufhauser later opened the scoring. Frustration began to creep in to the visitors’ play, boiling over when Damien Johnson dangerously lunged in on Emanuel Pogatetz. The challenge earned Johnson a straight red and Pogatetz joined him for an early bath due to his retaliation. Both sides had chances to score after this but it was Aufhauser who again proved to be the only one clinical enough.

13th October 2004: Northern Ireland 3 – 3 Austria

A last second Stuart Elliot strike handed Northern Ireland a point and dented Austria’s hope of qualifying for the World Cup finals. It was the scrappiest of goals, a stark contrast to David Healey’s wonder strike that made it 1-1. The then Preston striker hit home a dipping volley of the highest quality with his left boot that looped over a stranded Alex Manninger.

15th November 1995: Northern Ireland 5 – 3 Austria

Windsor Park has never since seen so many goals as the eight that flew in during this match. The hugely entertaining Euro 1996 qualifier went the way of the hosts despite Austria improving significantly in the second half. Current Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill grabbed a brace in the match, half of the goals total he managed in his entire international career.

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