Support is thin on the ground for an upset in Faro on Wednesday as the Republic of Ireland attempt to breathe life into their World Cup qualifying campaign.
Stephen Kenny’s men have a mountain to climb after starting their bid for Qatar qualification with two successive defeats to Serbia and Luxembourg and begin a September triple header with a daunting trip to Portugal without the injured Enda Stevens and positive Covid case Callum Robinson.
The only blemish so far for group leaders Portugal came when surrendering a two-goal lead to leave Serbia with only a draw, but they have shortened this week into red hot favourites at 1/4 from 4/11 to make it three wins from four matches at the start of their campaign.
An unsuccessful European Championship defence in the summer saw Portugal win only one game, but they are expected to get back to winning ways against the Irish, with a clean sheet victory in the Algarve also backed into 8/11 from 5/6.
New Manchester United signing Cristiano Ronaldo is rated the most likely first goalscorer having been backed into 2/1 from 11/4 this week,
…with Liverpool’s Diogo Jota also proving a popular pick at 9/2 to bag the first goal of the game.
Fans looking for positives for the visitors can point to a strong record against the Portuguese, with two wins apiece and two draws on the head-to-head record since their first competitive meeting in the Euro ‘96 qualifying campaign.
The Boys in Green however will kick off as massive underdogs having been eased to 11/1 from 9/1 for the victory, while the likes of Aaron Connolly and Adam Idah are being identified as their most likely goal threat at 11/2 apiece to find the net during the 90 minutes.
Bet on Portugal v Republic of Ireland.