Bet of the Day

Slovenia v Northern Ireland: Back hosts to avoid defeat in Bet Builder

Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill
Michael O'Neill isn't enjoying his return to the NI hotseat

We're chasing a fourth straight winner on FBOTD, and Kevin Hatchard can't see Northern Ireland getting much joy out of their trip to face Slovenia.

  • Northern Ireland have lost last three qualifiers 1-0

  • Slovenia have lost two of last 11 at home

  • On-form Sesko the key to Bet Builder

Slovenia v Northern Ireland
Thursday 07 September, 19:45
Live on Viaplay Sports 1

It was indeed the Regionalliga rumble we hoped for last night, as Eintracht Norderstedt's 3-1 win over Teutonia Ottensen landed our Over 3.5 Goals bet. We'll switch our attention now to international football, as Slovenia take on Northern Ireland in the Euro 2024 qualifiers.

Northern Ireland have made a pretty awful start to their bid to reach next year's finals. Michael O'Neill's men won 2-0 at San Marino in their opener, but then lost the next three games without scoring a goal. Finland, Denmark and Kazakhstan all beat them 1-0, with the latter defeat particularly alarming. Northern Ireland have now won just two of their last 11 matches in all competitions, and they barely avoided relegation to the bottom rung of the Nations League.

Slovenia appear to be in much better shape. They have claimed seven points from their first four qualifiers, and in their last home game they managed a creditable 1-1 draw with Denmark. In the shape of Panathinaikos forward Andraz Sporar and RB Leipzig tyro Benjamin Sesko, they have a genuinely dangerous front two, and Sampdoria midfielder Petar Stojanovic was a regular for Empoli last term.

In the Nations League, Slovenia retained their place in League B, finishing above Sweden in their section. They have won ten of their last 17 home matches in all competitions, losing just twice in that sequence. They are boosted by the return of world-class goalkeeper Jan Oblak, who is still an important part of the Atletico Madrid side. Sesko is in excellent form, having scored a brace in 3-0 win at Union Berlin at the weekend.

Northern Ireland will award a 102nd cap to Manchester United veteran Jonny Evans, and he could feature in a back three alongside Middlesbrough's Paddy McNair and ex-Watford centre-back Craig Cathcart.

I'll back Slovenia/Draw Double Chance, Over 6.5 Corners and Sesko to have a shot on target at 2.0421/20 on the Sportsbook's Bet Builder. Northern Ireland are in poor form, and are visiting a technically superior side that's strong at home. If you want to be bolder and back Slovenia to win instead of just Slovenia/Draw, that comes in at 2.89/5.

Back Slovenia/Draw, Over 6.5 Corners and Sesko 1+ shots on target at 2.0421/20

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Kevin Hatchard 2023 FBOTD P/L

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