Republic of Ireland vs Ukraine Match Live: Republic of Ireland head into their UEFA Nations League fixture with Ukraine looking to bounce back from the deflating defeat to Armenia over the weekend.
Ukraine will prepare for this League B Group 1 contest having endured significantly more disappointment having lost out to Wales in their World Cup playoff final on Sunday.
Despite the hot weather in Armenia on Saturday, Republic of Ireland head coach Stephen Kenny would have expected his side to grind out a win against the minnows of the group.
However, the Boys In Green failed to take their opportunities when they arrived, eventually succumbing to a Eduard Spertsyan goal which was scored in the 74th minute.
In the long run, Republic of Ireland have still only lost twice in 13 games, but the manner of the defeat and energy used in the searing heat leaves this upcoming contest far tougher than it could have been.
On a positive note, Republic of Ireland have gone over 14 months without suffering a defeat in Dublin, a six-match undefeated streak including draws with Serbia, Portugal and Belgium.
Nevertheless, losing to Ukraine will leave the team as strong contenders to drop down to the third tier of this competition, undoing a lot of the progress which has been made over the past 12 months.
From Ukraine’s perspective, this competition probably means little right now as they comes to terms with the hurt which follows missing out on a place at the World Cup at the final hurdle.
Although there are far more important things occurring back home, qualification was their beacon of hope, and the manner of the defeat to Wales may take some time to overcome.
While Wales squandered their own chances, Ukraine created enough at the other end to leave their hosts feeling fortunate that the contest did not go to extra time at the very least.
Realistically, head coach Oleksandr Petrakov will rest some of his regulars with three more games to be played in quick succession, but it could be an opportunity for fresh faces to make their own mark.
Eight outfield players in this squad have earned four caps or fewer, including wide player Mykhaylo Mudryk who looks like he could become a mainstay on the flank in years to come.
Kenny will make a number of alterations to his Republic of Ireland XI with Will Keane and Michael Obafemi both pushing for a chance in attack.
James McClean could return at left wing-back, while veteran Seamus Coleman may drop into the back three given the toil of Saturday’s game in Armenia.
Sergiy Sydorchuk and Mykola Shaparenko are options in the Ukraine midfield with Petrakov naturally contemplating changes to his starting lineup.
Eduard Sobol could return at left-back to hand a rest to Vitaliy Mykolenko, and Mudryk should make an appearance in the final third.
With Roman Yaremchuk unlikely to retain his spot down the middle of the attack for three more matches in succession, Artem Dovbyk may get a chance to impress in his place.
Republic of Ireland possible starting lineup:
Kelleher; Duffy, Collins, Egan; Coleman, Cullen, Hendrick, McClean; Ogbene, Keane, Robinson
Ukraine possible starting lineup:
Bushchan; Karavaev, Zabarnyi, Matvienko, Sobol; Zinchenko, Sydorchuk, Shaparenko; Yarmolenko, Dovbyk, Mudryk
Before the Armenia defeat, we would have fancied Republic of Ireland to collect at least a score draw against opponents who have taken on a high workload over the past week. However, even if Ukraine make changes, we still expect the visitors to claim all three points in Dublin, and in convincing fashion, too.