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Romania v Northern Ireland: Lafferty to reprise match-winning role

| 13.11.2014

Romania and Northern Ireland put their unbeaten records in Group F of the Euro 2016 qualifiers on the line when the Tricolorii entertain Michael O’Neill’s surprising pace-setters in Bucharest.

Despite their 100 per cent record from the three group games so far, the Green and White Army still head to Arena Nationala as 5/1 outsiders for victory.

That isn’t the only betting angle on the encounter of course, and three further punting avenues are explored below:

Under 2.5 goals @ 1/2

Only one of the pair’s six combined qualifiers have seen the total-goals tally fly beyond the 2.5 barrier.

Just one of Romania’s last seven home matches, be they competitive or friendly, have been what bettors in this market would call a “goal fest”, while the same number of Northern Ireland’s last eight away days would have failed to land.

Kyle Lafferty to score and Northern Ireland to win @ 10/1

Something about linking up with his national team stirs the goalscoring juices of the former Palermo striker, who is yet to find the net for Norwich in the Championship this season, into a bubbling frenzy.

On all three occasions he has played for his country this term, the 27-year-old has both found the net and won the game.

Northern Ireland (+1.0) to win @ 5/4

Those considering 5/1 for a side on a three-game streak to win as low-hanging fruit should know that, before their current boom, the Northern Irish had only won once in their previous 22 outings.

So, adding the security blanket of a one-goal head start should prove wise considering Romania, who have only scored two goals once in their last eight games, aren’t exactly flush in front of goal.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.