Estonia expect tough tie

Aidan Fitzmaurice

MIDDLESBROUGH'S Estonian star Tarmo Kink has predicted a tough battle against Ireland in the Euro 2012 play-offs next month

The 26-year-old, who had spells in his native Estonia, Russia and Hungary before moving to Teeside in 2010, is one of the key men in the Estonian side, and he says his country have every intention of finishing off the campaign by qualifying at Ireland's expense.

"It's a huge tie for us. We have already made history by making the play-offs for the first time, and now everyone in Estonia is hoping we can make our debut in the European Championships," says Kink.

"It will be a tough tie against Ireland, but it would have been tough whoever we drew for these games.

"I know some of the Irish players and they will be just as determined to qualify as we are."

Meanwhile, Estonian coach Tarmo Ruutli has already enjoyed a successful trip to Ireland as his club side Levadia Tallinn knocked Bohemians out of the UEFA Cup in 2004.