The Republic of Ireland will need to win two games on the road if they’re to reach the finals of Euro 2020.
Mick McCarthy’s side will travel to Slovakia in the one-off play-off semi-final on March 26th.
Should Ireland win in Slovakia they will be away to either Northern Ireland or Bosnia and Herzegovina in a one-leg play-off final on March 31st for a place at Euro 2020.
The venue of the Slovakia v Ireland game is yet to be confirmed, the Slovakia F.A have until December 20 to confirm the venue.
With Aviva Stadium set to host four games as part of next summer’s main event, McCarthy is fully aware of the supporters’ hopes of qualifying for a tournament on home soil.
“Somebody said to me the other day: “You know, Mick, the country’s right behind you, you’ve got to do it for the country”. I thought, “Yes, I know I have”,” stated McCarthy.
“Nothing extra could make me want to win a game of football, to be quite honest. That’s for me personally. But for the nation, for Ireland, it does mean a lot more, of course.”
Ireland have met Slovakia four times – sharing three draws and claiming one win, but McCarthy admitted that there is plenty of time to get his homework done before they face off again in the Play-Off Semi-Final.
“I haven’t had much time to assess it as yet. It’ll be a difficult game, no doubt. They were in Wales’ group, so I’m sure we’ll be able to get some intel, [some] info on them. We can get it anyway, from our analyst,” said McCarthy.
“[It will be a] tough game, people have been saying to me: “You’ll be playing one of the poorer sides, one of the third teams in the group.” Yeah, I said: “Exactly like us, that’s what we were”.
“So I think it’s a level playing field, to be quite honest. With the set-up they’ve got, they’ve got the home tie.”
Information regarding tickets and confirmation of venues will be announced in due course.