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Recent history between the sides gives added impetus to today's opening match. Thierry Henry's "hand of god" goal that gave France a spot at the 2010 World Cup is still fresh in everyone's minds. Irish hearts were broken and the scandal was ready. Later it emerged that FIFA had given the Irish FA a 5 million euro compensation for a radical refereeing error.

Those days our behind the two teams, as both squads have undergone huge changes since that fateful day. It does however add a bit of extra spice to the match, as the teams haven't faced each other since that qualifier. Another factor will be the demanding French crowd, for whom only the European Championship will do. All the pressure is on France, so it will be interesting to see how they cope. 

Ireland secured their place in the knockout stages thanks to an impressive 1-0 win over Italy. It must be noted though that Italy played the match with almost a second-string lineup, so they weren't at their best. However, it doesn't take anything away from the fact that Ireland played a strong match as the underdogs and won, which will have done a lot for their confidence.

France are a completely different opposition than a below-par Italy. The hosts haven't conceded a single goal from open play, and their defence which was criticized prior to the tournament has performed surprisingly well. Going forward Dimitri Payet is one of the hottest players in the world, and he's bound to cause problems for the Irish. If France don't crumble under pressure from the home crowd, Ireland could be in trouble. The 3-0 defeat against Belgium showed the vulnerable side of their defence, and France have the potential to do even more damage. If Ireland were to win it would be one of the biggest surprises in major tournament history.

Special Bets:

To score: Payet 2/1 Unibet

France at Euro 2016:

19.6.2016 Switzerland - France 0-0

15.6.2016 France - Albania 2-0

10.6.2016 France - Romania 2-1

Ireland at Euro 2016:

22.6.2016 Ireland - Italy 1-0

18.6.2016 Belgium - Ireland 3-0

13.6.2016 Ireland - Sweden 1-1


France have dealt well with the pressures of being the home nation, but this will be their first proper test. Material-wise the hosts are the clear favourites, but Ireland do have a chance to make it difficult for them. An spirited Irish performance has some nice odds.

** Handicap: Ireland +1,5 29/50 Unibet

* 1x2: Draw (X) 16/5 Betsafe / Betsson


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