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Republic of Ireland face Latvia in preparation for France qualifier



Republic of Ireland face their first test of the 2023 campaign when they welcome Latvia to the Aviva Stadium on Wednesday night. Stephen Kenny’s side will use the international friendly against the Baltic State, only the sixth meeting between the two sides, as perfect preparation for the UEFA EURO 2024 qualifier against France on Monday, March 27.

What Channel is it on?

The match will be broadcasted on RTE & ViaPlay. 

Match Officials

Referee: Andrei Chivulete (ROU)
Assistant Referee 1: Mihai Marica (ROU)
Assistant Referee 2: George Florin Neacsu (ROU)
Fourth Official: Rob Harvey (IRL)

Team News

Stephen Kenny has confirmed that striker Evan Ferguson will make his first international start for Ireland against Latvia on Wednesday night. The Brighton and Hove Albion forward has impressed with seven goals this season for the Premier League side and will be named in the starting line-up for his country for the first time. Adam Idah has reported for duty but will play no part in the international friendly against Latvia as he aims to be fit for the UEFA EURO 2024 qualifier against France.

What he said – Manager Stephen Kenny

On Evan Ferguson: “His career is in its infancy. He’s had a great start to his Premier League career and is scoring some goals in the Premier League, the FA Cup and League Cup. We have known about Evan for a few years now, coming through the system in Ireland with Bohemians and coming through the underage international teams. At 18 years of age now, he’s showing he is ready to come into the team and he will make his first start tomorrow in the game.”

On Latvia: “It’s our ambition to win the game. In all international games, you can’t take anything for granted. Latvia’s ranking is low but they have had some very good results. Drawing 3-3 with Turkey, 0-0 with Norway, beating Lithuania 3-1, 1-0 with Holland, they have shown the capacity to put in some good performances so you have to earn the right in every international game.”

What he said – Defender Matt Doherty

On Evan Ferguson: “I believe he is playing very well. I haven’t seen all of the games, but from the highlights and the goals he is scoring, he is scoring some good goals with great composure for someone who is only 18. Hopefully it will be the same for this camp, and not only for this camp but for him, personally, for the rest of the season and for the rest of his career, as I am sure he is going to have a good one.”

On his move to Spain: “It’s going well for me in Spain. It’s a different experience completely, different culture, different preparation for games. I’m enjoying my time there even though I’m not playing that much. The reason I left was, initially, it was just to go on loan for the rest of the season and then obviously we had the problems with too many loans, so then it was a case of I couldn’t really say no to that type of experience and a manager of his calibre.”

Opta Facts – Republic of Ireland v Latvia

– Republic of Ireland have won all five of their matches against Latvia in all competitions, scoring 14 goals and conceding just once.

– Just one of Republic of Ireland’s five meetings with Latvia in all competitions was a friendly, with the Boys in Green winning 3-0 in November 2013 after goals from Robbie Keane, Aiden McGeady and Shane Long.

– Republic of Ireland lost their last home game, losing 2-1 to Norway last November in a friendly. They haven’t lost consecutive home games since May 2014.

– Republic of Ireland have lost just two of their last 14 friendly matches (W7 D5), losing 3-0 away at England in November 2020 and 2-1 at home to Norway in November last year.

– Republic of Ireland’s Evan Ferguson has appeared twice as a substitute for Eire, against Norway and Malta in November. Should he score in this game, he would be the youngest (18 years, 154 days) Ireland scorer since Robbie Keane in October 1998 vs Malta (18 years, 98 days).

Probable line-ups

Republic of Ireland: TBC

Latvia: TBC


Republic of Ireland: TBC

Latvia: TBC


Seamus Coleman (Everton), Matt Doherty (Atletico Madrid), Andrew Omobamidele (Norwich City), Nathan Collins (Wolverhampton Wanderers), John Egan (Sheffield United), Dara O’Shea (West Bromwich Albion), Callum O’Dowda (Cardiff City), James McClean (Wigan Athletic).


Josh Cullen (Burnley), Jayson Molumby (West Bromwich Albion), Jeff Hendrick (Reading), Alan Browne (Preston North End), Jason Knight (Derby County), Will Smallbone (Stoke City, on loan from Southampton), Jamie McGrath (Dundee United), Mark Sykes (Bristol City).




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