Last updated 29/11/2018 18:16CET
UEFA Nations League: Republic of Ireland - Wales Match press kits

UEFA Nations League - 2018/19 SeasonMatch press kits

Republic of IrelandRepublic of IrelandAviva Stadium - DublinTuesday 16 October 2018
20.45CET (19.45 local time)
Group B4 - Matchday 4
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Previous meetings Only this chapter

Head to Head

UEFA Nations League
DateStage reachedMatchResultVenueGoalscorers
06/09/2018GS-FTWales - Republic of Ireland4-1
CardiffLawrence 6, Bale 18, Ramsey 37, Roberts 55; Williams 66
FIFA World Cup
DateStage reachedMatchResultVenueGoalscorers
09/10/2017QR (GS)Wales - Republic of Ireland0-1
CardiffMcClean 57
24/03/2017QR (GS)Republic of Ireland - Wales0-0Dublin
DateStage reachedMatchResultVenueGoalscorers
17/11/2007QR (GS)Wales - Republic of Ireland2-2CardiffKoumas 23, 89 (P); Keane 31, Doyle 60
24/03/2007QR (GS)Republic of Ireland - Wales1-0
DublinIreland 39
 QualifyingFinal tournamentTotal
Republic of Ireland211021101001166461817

Last updated 14/10/2018 18:26CET

Squad list Only this chapter

Republic of Ireland - Squad list
League phase
1Colin Doyle12/06/198533Hearts - 00
16Sean McDermott30/05/199325Kristiansund - 00
23Darren Randolph12/05/198731Middlesbrough - 20
2Matthew Doherty16/01/199226Wolves - 10
3Cyrus Christie30/09/199226Fulham*20
4Shane Duffy01/01/199226Brighton*20
5Derrick Williams17/01/199325Blackburn - 00
7Shaun Williams19/10/198631Millwall - 11
12Enda Stevens09/07/199028Sheff. United - 20
15John Egan20/10/199225Sheff. United - 00
20Richard Keogh11/08/198632Derby - 10
21Kevin Long18/08/199028Burnley - 10
6David Meyler29/05/198929Reading - 00
8Alan Browne15/04/199523Preston - 00
11James McClean22/04/198929Stoke*10
13Jeff Hendrick31/01/199226Burnley - 20
14Callum Robinson02/02/199523Preston - 20
17Conor Hourihane02/02/199127Aston Villa - 10
22Harry Arter28/12/198928Cardiff*10
9Shane Long22/01/198731Southampton - 10
10Seán Maguire01/05/199424Preston - 00
18Aiden O'Brien04/10/199325Millwall - 10
19Scott Hogan13/04/199226Aston Villa - 00
-Martin O'Neill01/03/195266 - 20
Wales - Squad list
League phase
1Wayne Hennessey24/01/198731Crystal Palace - 20
12Danny Ward22/06/199325Leicester - 00
21Adam Davies17/07/199226Barnsley - 00
2Chris Gunter21/07/198929Reading - 10
3Jazz Richards12/04/199127Cardiff - 00
4Ben Davies24/04/199325Tottenham*20
5James Chester23/01/198929Aston Villa - 10
6Ashley Williams23/08/198434Stoke - 10
14Connor Roberts23/09/199523Swansea - 21
15Joe Rodon22/10/199720Swansea - 00
7Joe Allen14/03/199028Stoke*20
8Andy King29/10/198829Leicester - 00
11Tom Lawrence13/01/199424Derby - 21
13Declan John30/06/199523Swansea - 00
17Gwion Edwards01/03/199325Ipswich - 00
19Kieron Freeman21/03/199226Sheff. United - 00
20George Thomas24/03/199721Scunthorpe - 00
23Matthew Smith22/11/199918Twente - 10
9Sam Vokes21/10/198928Burnley - 00
10Ben Woodburn15/10/199919Sheff. United - 10
16David Brooks08/07/199721Bournemouth - 20
18Harry Wilson22/03/199721Derby - 00
22Tyler Roberts12/01/199919Leeds - 20
-Ryan Giggs29/11/197344 - 20

Last updated 16/10/2018 10:55CET

Head coach Only this chapter

Martin O'Neill

Date of birth: 1 March 1952
Nationality: Northern Irish
Playing career: Lisburn Distillery, Nottingham Forest, Norwich (twice), Manchester City, Notts County, Chesterfield, Fulham
Coaching career:
Grantham Town, Shepshed Charterhouse, Wycombe, Norwich, Leicester, Celtic, Aston Villa, Sunderland, Republic of Ireland

• The highlight of Northern Irish international O'Neill's playing career was winning the 1977/78 English title and 1979 and 1980 European Cups under Brian Clough at Nottingham Forest (though he did not play in the first of those finals). He also appeared at the 1982 FIFA World Cup.

• After injury ended O'Neill's career, he entered management with non-league Grantham, Shepshed and Wycombe, whom he led into the Football League for the first time in 1993 and a further promotion the next year.

• He left Wycombe for Norwich in June 1995 but within six months had gone to Leicester, whom he would guide into the Premier League, winning the 1997 and 2000 League Cups to earn two UEFA Cup campaigns.

• O'Neill was appointed by Celtic in summer 2000 and in five years at the helm landed three league titles and three Scottish Cups, the Scottish League Cup completing a 2000/01 treble. He also led them to the 2003 UEFA Cup final.

• Managed Aston Villa between 2006 and 2010, then Sunderland from 2011 to March 2013. O'Neill was appointed Ireland manager, to be assisted by fellow former Forest player Roy Keane, that November, and led the team to UEFA EURO 2016 via a play-off win against Bosnia and Herzegovina, taking them to the last 16 where Ireland were eliminated by hosts France. He agreed a new contract despite subsequently missing out on the 2018 World Cup after a play-off defeat by Denmark.


Ryan Giggs

Date of birth: 29 November 1973
Nationality: Welsh
Playing career: Manchester United
Coaching career: Manchester United (caretaker), Manchester United (assistant), Wales

• Manchester United's most successful ever player, Cardiff-born Giggs signed for the club on his 14th birthday and made his first-team debut in March 1991 at 17. He was capped at the same age, becoming Wales' youngest senior international.

• An extravagantly gifted left-winger hailed at Old Trafford and beyond as the 'new George Best', Giggs was a United regular in his late teens and a champion of England before he reached 20 – the first of a record-breaking 13 English Premier League titles he would win, all under Sir Alex Ferguson, during 24 years as a first-teamer. He landed domestic doubles in 1993/94 and 1995/96 and a famous treble in 1998/99, when United added the UEFA Champions League by dramatically defeating Bayern München in the final at the Camp Nou.

• He broke Sir Bobby Charlton's club record of 758 appearances when he came on as a substitute in the victorious 2008 UEFA Champions League final against Chelsea in Moscow and would end his United career with 963 games and 168 goals. In all he helped United win 25 major trophies and was voted both PFA Player of the Year and BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 2009.

• He played 64 times for Wales, scoring 12 goals, before retiring from international football in 2007 after three years as captain. Like Northern Ireland's Best, Giggs was never able to parade his talent at a major tournament.

• Joined the coaching staff of Ferguson's replacement David Moyes while still active as a player during 2013/14 and assumed player-caretaker duties for the final four games of the campaign after Moyes' sacking. He announced his retirement from playing in May 2014 to take up a position as assistant to new manager Louis van Gaal and finally left Old Trafford two years later, appointed as Wales coach in January 2018 to succeed Chris Coleman.


Match officials Only this chapter

  • RefereeBjörn Kuipers (NED)
  • Assistant refereesSander van Roekel (NED) , Erwin Zeinstra (NED)
  • Additional assistant refereesDennis Higler (NED) , Pol van Boekel (NED)
  • Fourth officialJan de Vries (NED)
  • UEFA DelegateKris Bellon (BEL)
  • UEFA Referee observerGylfi Thor Orrason (ISL)


NameDate of birthUEFA matches
Björn Kuipers28/03/19730115

UEFA Nations League matches between the two teams

No such matches refereed

Other matches involving teams from either of the two countries involved in this match

DateCompetitionStage reachedHomeAwayResultVenue
15/11/2011EUROPORepublic of IrelandEstonia1-1Dublin
10/06/2012EUROGS-FTRepublic of IrelandCroatia1-3Poznan
16/11/2015EUROPORepublic of IrelandBosnia and Herzegovina2-0Dublin

Last updated 14/10/2018 18:26CET

Competition facts Only this chapter

What is the background to the UEFA Nations League?

The rejuvenation of national team football – and the UEFA Nations League – stems from the desire of UEFA and its 55 member associations to improve the quality and standing of national team football. UEFA and its associations wanted more sporting meaning in national team football, with associations, coaches, players and supporters increasingly of the opinion that friendly matches are not providing adequate competition for national teams.

Extensive consultation and discussions started as far back as the 2011 UEFA Strategy Meeting in Cyprus and continued at a series of Top Executive Programme (TEP) meetings over the following three years. The UEFA Nations League was unanimously adopted at the XXXVIII Ordinary UEFA Congress in Astana on 27 March 2014.

What is the basic format?

  • The format of the UEFA Nations League features promotion and relegation. The 55 European national teams have been divided into four leagues in accordance with UEFA's national association coefficient rankings on 11 October 2017.
  • League A includes the top-ranked sides and League D includes the lowest:

League A

Group A1: Germany, France, Netherlands
Group A2: Belgium, Switzerland, Iceland
Group A3: Portugal, Italy, Poland
Group A4: Spain, England, Croatia

  • Teams have been split into four groups of three, with the group winners then contesting the UEFA Nations League Finals (semi-finals, third-place match and final) in June 2019 to become the UEFA Nations League winners. One host country will be appointed in December 2018 from among the finalist teams.
  • The four teams that finish bottom of their groups will be relegated to League B for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

League B

Group B1: Slovakia, Ukraine, Czech Republic
Group B2: Russia, Sweden, Turkey
Group B3: Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Northern Ireland
Group B4: Wales, Republic of Ireland, Denmark

  • Teams have been split into four groups of three.
  • The four group winners are promoted to League A, with the four sides that finish bottom relegated to League C for the next competition to be played in 2020.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer

League C

Group C1: Scotland, Albania, Israel
Group C2: Hungary, Greece, Finland, Estonia
Group C3: Slovenia, Norway, Bulgaria, Cyprus
Group C4: Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Lithuania

  • Teams have been split into one group of three (containing teams from Pots 1, 2 and 3 only) and three groups of four.
  • Due to winter venue restrictions, a group could contain a maximum of two of these teams: Norway, Finland, Estonia, Lithuania.
  • The four group winners are promoted to League B, with the four sides that finish bottom relegated to League D for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

League D

Group D1: Georgia, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Andorra
Group D2: Belarus, Luxembourg, Moldova, San Marino
Group D3: Azerbaijan, Faroe Islands, Malta, Kosovo
Group D4: FYR Macedonia, Armenia, Liechtenstein, Gibraltar

  • Teams have been split into four groups of four.
  • Due to excessive travel restrictions, any group could not contain a maximum of one of these pairs: Andorra & Kazakhstan, Faroe Islands & Kazakhstan, Gibraltar & Kazakhstan, Gibraltar & Azerbaijan
  • The four group winners are promoted to League C for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

  • Leagues A and B consist of four groups of three teams
  • League C comprises one group of three teams and three groups of four sides
  • League D is formed by four groups of four teams
  • The League Phase Draw for the UEFA Nations League took place at the SwissTech Convention Centre in Lausanne on 24 January 2018.
  • In each league, four group winners are promoted (or play in the Finals, see below) and four teams are relegated for the next competition to be played in 2020.
  • The overall UEFA Nations League rankings will determine the composition of the draw pots for the subsequent European Qualifiers.
  • In addition, the UEFA Nations League will provide teams with another chance to qualify for the UEFA EURO final tournament, with four sides qualifying through play-off matches which take place in March 2020 (see below).

When will the UEFA Nations League take place?

The UEFA Nations League will take place as follows:

  • See the full fixture list.
  • The UEFA Nations League group games are being held over six matchdays, during the 'double-headers' in September, October and November 2018. The UEFA Nations League Finals competition for the teams that win the four groups within the top division is scheduled for June 2019.
  • For the UEFA Nations League Finals, the group winners of UEFA Nations League A will play in a knockout format (semi-finals, third-place match and final) in June 2019 to become the UEFA Nations League winners. One host country will be formally appointed by the UEFA Executive Committee in December 2018 from one of the nations competing in the final four. Italy, Poland and Portugal (all in Group A3) have expressed interest.
  • The play-off matches will be staged in March 2020 (see below).

Will qualifying for the UEFA EURO change?

The changes to UEFA EURO qualifying will make it more streamlined. The equation is now simple: ten groups with the top two teams in each group qualifying automatically, and the other four places being awarded to European Qualifiers play-off winners, in which the 16 group winners of the UEFA Nations League will be in contention.

The UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying draw will be made after the completion of the UEFA Nations League and allow for the four UEFA Nations League Finals participants to be drawn into groups of five teams.

But the key principle of the qualifiers remains: that every team can play every team.

The European Qualifiers for UEFA EURO 2020 commence in March 2019. There will be two matchdays in each of March, June, September, October and November 2019. In total, there will be five groups of five teams and five groups of six teams (ten groups in all) playing over ten matchdays (the same number as now). The winner and runner-up in each of the ten groups will qualify automatically for the UEFA EURO 2020 final tournament (June 2020).

  • The last four EURO places will be won through the European Qualifiers play-offs, which will take place in March 2020 and which will be contested by the 16 UEFA Nations League group winners.
  • If a group winner has already qualified via the European Qualifiers, then their spot will go to the next best-ranked team in their league. If a league does not have four teams to compete, the remaining slots are allocated to teams from another league, according to the overall UEFA Nations League ranking.  
  • Each league will have a path of its own and each path will feature two single-leg semi-finals and one single-leg final. The winner of each path will win a ticket to UEFA EURO 2020.

How are the overall UEFA Nations League rankings calculated?

Within each league (A, B, C and D), the overall ranking will be calculated based on position in the group then points, goal difference, goals scored, away goals scored, wins, away wins, disciplinary points, coefficient ranking.

What are the advantages for national associations and teams?

National associations and coaches, in consultations with UEFA, revealed that they feel that friendly internationals are not providing adequate sporting competition. The UEFA Nations League creates more meaningful and competitive matches for teams and a dedicated calendar and structure for national team football.

Top teams can also aspire to take part in the UEFA Nations League Finals, a new top-level event.

For middle-ranking and smaller nations, the UEFA Nations League will offer an extra way to qualify for UEFA EURO final tournaments. Lower-tier countries – the bottom 16 in the rankings – are now guaranteed one of the 24 qualifying slots for UEFA EURO.

Lower-ranking teams who have struggled against sides ranked considerably higher than them will now get the chance to take part in balanced matches. Teams do not learn and progress by repeatedly losing; now some sides will start winning.

While the UEFA Nations League will replace most friendly internationals, there will still be space in the calendar for friendlies, especially for top teams who may want to face opposition from outside Europe as they will be in groups of three teams.

Associations and teams benefit from clarity of the fixture calendar, and there is now a clear buffer between the end of the UEFA EURO and FIFA World Cup, and vice versa, as well as stability of income.

What are the advantages for supporters?

Supporters more than most realise that most friendlies fail to deliver competitive and meaningful football. Now they will have the opportunity to see their teams play in more competitive matches, take part in a new competition and get a second chance to qualify for the major tournaments.

In every even year there are World Cup or UEFA EURO champions; now in every odd year there will be a UEFA Nations League winners. Football is about competition and now, just like in club football, there will be a national team champion at the close of every season.

Will this mean more demands on players and clubs?

No: the UEFA Nations League and European Qualifiers will adhere to the existing agreed international match calendar. UEFA is always keen to preserve the balance between club and international football. The new competition should, in fact, reduce demands on players and clubs with less travel envisaged for friendly games while national teams will be playing more consistently at their own level. With double-header matchweeks, players will even go back to their clubs earlier than is currently the case.

Is this just about generating more revenue?

No, finances are not a driver for the new competition. However, the competition will have the same centralised media rights as have recently been introduced for all European Qualifiers so associations will have even more stability in their income.

Will there be no more friendly internationals?

There will certainly be fewer friendly internationals and undoubtedly fewer meaningless friendlies. However, there will still be space in the calendar for friendly internationals – particularly warm-up matches for final tournaments. UEFA is also keen that European teams will still have the chance to play opponents from other confederations.


Match-by-match lineups Only this chapter

Republic of Ireland

  • UEFA Nations League - Group stage – final tournament
    Group B4 - Group Standings
    Republic of Ireland2011141
    Matchday 1 (06/09/2018)
    Wales 4-1 Republic of Ireland
    1-0 Lawrence 6, 2-0 Bale 18, 3-0 Ramsey 37, 4-0 Roberts 55, 4-1 Williams 66
    Randolph, Coleman, Christie, Duffy, Clark, O'Dowda, Hendrick, Robinson (77 Horgan), Ward (61 Stevens), Walters, Hourihane (56 Williams)
  • Matchday 3 (13/10/2018)
    Republic of Ireland 0-0 Denmark
    Randolph, Doherty, Christie, Duffy, O'Dowda (46 Stevens), Long (83 O'Brien), McClean, Hendrick, Keogh, Long, Arter (65 Robinson)
  • Matchday 4 (16/10/2018)
    Republic of Ireland-Wales
  • Matchday 6 (19/11/2018)
    Denmark-Republic of Ireland


  • UEFA Nations League - Group stage – final tournament
    Matchday 1 (06/09/2018)
    Wales 4-1 Republic of Ireland
    1-0 Lawrence 6, 2-0 Bale 18, 3-0 Ramsey 37, 4-0 Roberts 55, 4-1 Williams 66
    Hennessey, Davies (81 Dummett), A. Williams, Allen, Ramsey, Bale (75 Roberts), Brooks, Roberts, Ampadu (67 Smith), Lawrence, Mepham
  • Matchday 2 (09/09/2018)
    Denmark 2-0 Wales
    1-0 Eriksen 32, 2-0 Eriksen 63 (P)
    Hennessey, Gunter, Davies, Chester, Allen, Ramsey, Bale, Roberts (59 Brooks), Ampadu (71 Roberts), Lawrence (79 Woodburn), Mepham
  • Matchday 4 (16/10/2018)
    Republic of Ireland-Wales
  • Matchday 5 (16/11/2018)

Last updated 14/10/2018 18:26CET



  • Disclaimer: Although UEFA has taken all reasonable care that the information contained within this document is accurate at the time of publication, no representation or guarantee (including liability towards third parties), expressed or implied, is made as to its accuracy, reliability or completeness. Therefore, UEFA assumes no liability for the use or interpretation of information contained herein. More information can be found in the competition regulations available on