Greece host relegation battling Northern Ireland at Georgios Kamaras Stadium, Athens, in League C2 of 2022-23 UEFA Nations League.
Victory would see Greece end their promotion winning campaign on a high, whilst Northern Ireland must win to stay up although they will survive if Cyprus fail to better their result.
Petros Mantalos and Georgios Giakoumakis are set to return for Greece after the pair were suspended for their defeat in Cyprus.
Northern Ireland will have midfielder, Conor McMenamin available for selection after he was reinstated to the squad, having missed their win over Kosovo due to a historic video emerging of him singing an alleged pro-IRA chant.
Manager, Ian Baraclough meanwhile has no fresh injury or suspension concerns to report.
- Greece won their only previous Nations League meeting against Northern Ireland (W1), courtesy of a 39th minute winner from Anastasios Bakasetas in Belfast in June 2022.
- Northern Ireland have won just one of four previous visits to Greece in all competitions (W1, L3).
- Greece have scored in three of their four previous home matches against Northern Ireland.
- Greece have scored five goals at home without conceding in this group (W2).
- Northern Ireland have scored five goals in two of three away matches in all competitions in 2022, of which two goals came in the 83rd minute.
With promotion already assured, Greece seemed to be going through the ordinary motions – akin to a team safe from relegation but unable to fight for European qualification – in their defeat away to Cyprus on Saturday but I do expect them to deliver a strong performance at home.
Northern Ireland meanwhile have to summon up the spirit of Saturday’s comeback win over Kosovo because victory would likely see them survive if they play at their best, otherwise they need Kosovo to do them a favour and beat Cyprus in order to avoid relegation.
This game therefore should be quite intriguing because it is hard to predict what sort of performance Greece could deliver, whereas Northern Ireland have to just go and play their best and hope results go in their favour.
A draw therefore wouldn’t be surprising given Ireland’s poor away form in this fixture but I fancy them to go and get the win to guarantee safety on their own terms.
Prediction: Greece 0-1 Northern Ireland
Result: Greece 3-1 Northern Ireland