Ireland v Wales: The last five showdowns

Robert Fanning takes a look at the most recent past matches between the two sides

Ireland v Wales: The last five showdowns

©INPHO/Donall Farmer u0003

In contrast to rugby, Ireland have only played Wales in soccer just five times over the last 20 years.

Ireland face the Welsh on Friday night in front of a sold out Aviva Stadium. It has been a highly anticipated match that should play a huge role in deciding both sides' World Cup qualification fate. Ireland find themselves on top of their group on 10 points with Wales sitting four points behind them. The Welsh side have had a remarkable year, reaching the semi finals of the Euros last summer for the first time in their history. They are 12th in The FIFA World Rankings which is also a career high.

Here are five previous meetings between the two nations:

1997 - Wales 0 Republic of Ireland 0

This fixture was a friendly between the two sides which took place in Ninian Park, Cardiff. Mick McCarthy was Ireland’s manager.

2007 - Republic of Ireland 1 Wales 0

It was a Euro 2008 qualifier that promised so much. It would be the first football international at Croke Park but unfortunately the game never got going. However the main focus was winning the game and thanks to a 37th minute goal from ex-Ireland international midfielder Stephen Ireland, that is exactly what the home side did.

2007 - Wales 2 Republic of Ireland 2

The second fixture between the two sides at the Euro qualifiers which turned out to be a much more intriguing game. Ireland found themselves behind after 24 minutes but goals from Kevin Doyle and Robbie Keane put the visitors in front. Ireland looked to have won the game until Paul McShane brought down substitute David Cotterill in the 89th minute. Jason Koumas made no mistake with the spot kick to score his second goal of the game and deny the visitors of all three points.

Wales's Jason Koumas (far left) scores a penalty to level the game
©INPHO/Donall Farmer

2011 - Republic of Ireland 3 Wales 0

The 2011 Nations Cup was the inaugural round-robin tournament between the Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Scotland and Wales national teams. The first set of two games were played in Dublin in February, with the remaining four games played in May 2011. It was won by the Republic Of Ireland, who won all three of their games without conceding a goal. They beat Wales comprehensively scoring three second half goals.

Wale's Sam Vokes and Ciaran Clark of Ireland contest a high ball
©INPHO/Paul Greenwood

2013 - Wales 0 Republic of Ireland 0

Republic of Ireland missed two late opportunities as their friendly against Wales in Cardiff ended goalless. As the injured Gareth Bale watched from the stands, Chris Coleman's Welsh team registered only their second clean sheet in 15 home games.

The last time Wales beat Ireland was in Dublin in 1992, over 25 years ago.