Ireland face Bosnia in Euro 2016 play-offs

The Republic of Ireland will need to beat Bosnia-Herzegovina to reach the Euro 2016 finals in France next year following Sunday’s draw for the play-offs. Martin O’Neill’s side took third place in Group D behind world champions Germany and Poland, and that was enough to earn them a spot in one of the four play-off ties to decide the final qualifiers for the 24-team tournament.

UEFA General Secretary Gianni Infantino (left) with competition ambassador Dominique Rocheteau during the draw for the play-off matches for UEFA Euro 2016 at the UEFA headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland, on Sunday.   -  Reuters

A picture of a screen shows the results of the draw for the play-off matches for UEFA Euro 2016.   -  Reuters

The Republic of Ireland will need to beat Bosnia-Herzegovina to reach the Euro 2016 finals in France next year following Sunday’s draw for the play-offs.

Martin O’Neill’s side took third place in Group D behind world champions Germany and Poland, and that was enough to earn them a spot in one of the four play-off ties to decide the final qualifiers for the 24-team tournament.

Bosnia were third in Group B behind Belgium and Wales.

“If there is any slight advantage to be had for us, it’s that the second game is in Dublin,” O’Neill told the UEFA website.

“We need to perform out in Bosnia to make sure that the second game in Dublin means something. We have a chance.

“We had terrific results against Germany, the draw out in Germany and a home win, and because that’s so recent we can draw real confidence from it.”

Ireland have met Bosnia just once before, with the Irish winning 1-0 courtesy of a Shane Long header in May 2012 under previous manager Giovanni Trapattoni.

They reached Euro 2012 via a play-off win over Estonia. Bosnia lost in the play-offs for the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012, both times to Portugal.

In the other ties, Sweden take on Denmark in a Scandinavian derby, Ukraine play Slovenia and Norway tackle Hungary.

The play-offs fixtures:

Norway vs Hungary (1st leg November 12; 2nd leg November 15)

Bosnia-Herzegovina vs Ireland (1st leg November 13; 2nd leg November 16)

Ukraine vs Slovenia (1st leg November 14; 2nd leg November 17)

Sweden vs Denmark (1st leg November 14; 2nd leg November 17)

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