Northern Ireland and Estonia meet at Windsor Park, in a match for this phase of the Qualifying Round. There is no record of direct confrontations between these two teams in the last 3 years. The last match was played on 07-10-2011 and ended with the score: Northern Ireland (1-2) Estonia. In this match the home factor may be decisive, since both teams present considerable differences in the results obtained at home and as a visitor.
The home team will make its debut in this edition of the competition, as it did not have to play any of the eliminatory games prior to this group stage. This is a team that usually makes good use of the home advantage, stronger with the help of its supporters, since in the last 30 matches they register 3 wins, 5 draws and 7 losses in away matches, with 6 goals scored and 11 conceded; against 9 wins and 6 losses at their stadium, with 25 goals scored and 13 suffered. In their last match, for the UEFA Nations League, they lost with Austria at home (1-2). In the last 9 home matches Northern Ireland has 5 wins and 4 defeats. This is a team that usually scores a few times first: it only opened the scoring in 3 of its last 15 games, of these 3 it reached the break in advantage in 2 and won at the end of the 90 ‘in all. In 15 matches, they suffered the first goal 9 times and only managed 1 comeback.
The selection of Northern Ireland leaves for this unmotivated party, after a defeat by 1-2 in the reception to Austria, in a game for the League of Nations. The Northern Irish team usually acts in a tactical system in 4-3-3, favoring a more direct style of play. In this tactical drawing, the three men responsible for throwing the panic in the opposing defense are McGinn, Magennis and Dallas: the first is very fast and strong in the finalization. For this game coach Michael O’Neill can count on all his players.
The visiting team had direct access to this group stage, so they will play their first match in this edition of the competition. This is a team that, oddly enough, was better outside than at home, as in the last 30 matches they register 6 wins, 4 draws and 5 losses in away matches; against 5 wins, 3 draws and 7 losses at their stadium. In their last match, for the UEFA Nations League, they got a away win against Greece by (0-1). In the last 10 away matches Estonia has a record of 4 wins, 2 draws and 4 losses. They have not been very strong defensively, since they have suffered goals in 8 of the last 10 matches. In their away matches there is a tendency for few goals, since 7 of the last 15 matches have ended with Under 1,5 goals and 11 out of 15 have ended with Under 2,5 goals. In 15 games, he never got the comeback in the 7 games in which he suffered the first goal.
Estonia comes into this game with a triumph, by 0-1, in the displacement to the land of Greece, in a match for the League of Nations. Quite possibly, Henri Anier will be the most offensive reference of the whole of Estonia and his strongest point is in the finalization. The midfield will be occupied by Mattias Kait, being this very powerful and strong in the defensive and offensive transition. Estonia opts for a very direct style of play, attacking preferably through the central corridor. There are no absences of weight for this game.