Euro 2012 - Group C
Sunday June 10th - 7.45pm BST - ITV1
Municipal Stadium, Poznan POL
Republic of Ireland make their first appearance at a major finals since 2002 when they take on Croatia in their opening match of Group C at Euro 2012. The two sides meet at the Municipal Stadium in Wroclaw on Sunday June 10th and both will see this as a must-win match. With Spain and Italy the other two teams in Group C, a defeat here would surely spell the end of their European Championship hopes.
Money-Back Special - If Ireland beat Croatia bookmaker Paddy Power will refund all losing first goalscorer, last goalscorer, correct score and scorecast singles on this match.
Rep of Ireland deservedly booked their place at the Euro 2012 finals with a play-off win over Estonia. They were unfortunate to miss out on top spot in Group B of qualifying as they were pipped by Russia, although they were hugely impressive defensively throughout.
Croatia also needed the play-offs to make it this summer's finals after they finished second to surprise package Greece in Group F. They overcame Turkey to book their place in Poland and Ukraine, while the likes of Luka Modric, Eduardo and Nikica Jelavic make them a dangerous outfit.
|Ireland Form Guide - DWWWDD||Croatia Form Guide - WLWWDL|
|Robbie Keane||Luka Modrić|
|James McLean||Ivica Olić|
|Shay Given||Nikica Jelavić|
Ireland and Croatia have met six times over the years, with three of those ending in draws and Republic of Ireland winning two. Croatia have failed to win any of the last three meetings, with their sole success coming back in 1999, while Ireland have kept clean sheets in each of the last two meetings.