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Everything you need to know about Ireland's World Cup Group D run-in and what's needed to qualify

 

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Jonathan Walters celebrates

Jonathan Walters celebrates

Jonathan Walters celebrates

It was a chance missed to bury any hopes Austria had of sneaking into a play-off but Ireland's shortcomings mean that the four big guns in Group D are still in with a fighting chance of qualifying for the World Cup in Russia.

Ireland still enjoy a healthy position - behind only on goal difference to Serbia - on 12 points and four ahead of both Wales and Austria with four games to play.

Wales arguably have the easier run-in as they face two of the top four at home while Serbia still have to travel to Dublin and Vienna.

Ireland's questionable home form will make the Serbia encounter on September 5 an interesting affair and that clash comes just three days after a what is now a pivotal away day in Georgia.

It took a last-gasp Aiden McGeady goal to seal the three points in Tblisi in Ireland's opening Euro 2016 qualifier while Scotland were beaten 1-0 away to the Georgians.

Here is how the table looks this morning:

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Remaining fixtures:

SERBIA

Serbia v Moldova (Sept 2)

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Ireland v Serbia (Sept 5)

Austria v Serbia (Oct 6)

Serbia v Georgia (Oct 9)

IRELAND

Georgia v Ireland (Sept 2)

Ireland v Serbia (Sept 5)

Ireland v Moldova (Oct 6)

Wales v Ireland (Oct 9)

WALES

Wales v Austria (Sept 2)

Moldova v Wales (Sept 5)

Georgia v Wales (Oct 6)

Wales v Ireland (Oct 9)

AUSTRIA

Wales v Austria (Sept 2)

Austria v Georgia (Sept 5)

Austria v Serbia (Oct 6)

Moldova v Austria (Oct 9)

 

While it would be foolish to presume the top four will dispose of Georgia and Moldova in the run in, this is how the table (points only) will look should that happen:

Serbia 18

Ireland 18

Wales 14

Austria 14

 

And these would be the crucial fixtures:

SERBIA

Ireland v Serbia (Sept 5)

Austria v Serbia (Oct 6)

IRELAND

Ireland v Serbia (Sept 5)

Wales v Ireland (Oct 9)

WALES

Wales v Austria (Sept 2)

Wales v Ireland (Oct 9)

AUSTRIA

Wales v Austria (Sept 2)

Austria v Serbia (Oct 6)

 

It's very much all to play for.


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