Can Netherlands leapfrog Northern Ireland in Group C?

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    Can Netherlands leapfrog Northern Ireland in Group C?
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    Northern Ireland travel to Rotterdam to face the Netherlands on Thursday as qualifying for UEFA Euro 2020 continues.

    Michael O’Neill’s men require just a point to keep them above the Netherlands in Group C, but avoiding defeat will be a huge ask for the visitors.

    The Netherlands are currently 3 points behind Northern Ireland although they do have a game in hand.

    Northern Ireland have undoubtedly been one of the surprise packages of the qualifying campaign.

    They won their first 4 group matches and only narrowly lost to Germany last time out after putting in an impressive performance against the four-time World Cup winners.

    Northern Ireland also boast the best defensive record in Group C having conceded just 4 goals in their opening 5 matches.

    Two of those goals came in their defeat to Germany in the previous round, while they have kept clean sheets against Estonia and Belarus.

    With that being said, they have only managed to score 7 goals in that time. When you compare this to Germany (17) and Netherlands (14), it is clear that Northern Ireland lack a cutting edge up front.

    The Netherlands have won 3 and lost 1 of their 4 group games so far and will be looking to go level on points with Northern Ireland on Thursday.

    Their only defeat was at home to Germany, but they have since got their revenge by beating the Germans 4-2 in their own back yard.

    They beat Estonia 4-0 in their last match and the team has proven that it can produce goals from all over the pitch.

    Liverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum has scored in his nation’s last two qualifying matches, while Ryan Babel bagged a brace in their previous match.

    Netherlands manager Ronald Koeman has no fresh injury worries and could name the same starting eleven that faced Estonia.

    On the other hand, Norwich City left-back Jamal Lewis has withdrawn from Northern Ireland’s squad after sustaining a knee injury.

    Northern Ireland have won just 1 of their 6 meetings with Netherlands and this sole victory came all the way back in 1965.

    However, in their most recent meeting in 2012, Netherlands registered an emphatic 6-0 win.

    The Netherlands have also kept a clean sheet in 4 of the 6 matches between the two teams.

    Recent trends are pointing towards another convincing win for Netherlands. Forebet predicts a comfortable home victory and a clean sheet to boot.

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