Austria vs. Republic of Ireland, 2014 World Cup qualifying: Preview and TV schedule

Thomas Niedermueller

Both Austria and the Republic of Ireland cling to hopes of finishing second in Group C and meet in Vienna on Tuesday.

Austria and the Republic of Ireland are currently tied on points in Group C, with the former ahead on goal difference. While any hopes of catching table-toppers Germany have evaporated, they're both within three points of Sweden in the qualification playoff spot. That makes this a must-win game for both sides, with both hoping Kazakhstan can surprise and take points from Sweden too.

The hosts, Austria, lost 3-0 to Germany on Friday while Ireland recorded a costly defeat at home to Sweden, meaning neither team has the advantage of momentum. On quality, Austria probably have the slight advantage, with Bayern Munich's David Alaba expected to start in defence and Premier League players Andreas Weimann and Marko Arnautović forming a talented attack. However, they haven't qualified for a World Cup since 1998, bettered by Ireland's showing in 2002.

In the reverse fixture in Dublin, Ireland held their opponents to an eventful 2-2 draw, though will be without a trio of first-team regulars for this game. Aiden McGeady, Sean St. Ledger and Joey O'Brien are all unavailable, though Austria have all of their stars at the disposal of Swiss coach Marcel Koller.

Match Date/Time: Tuesday, 8:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Ernst-Happel-Stadion, Vienna, Austria

TV: RTE 2 (Ireland), ORF 1 (Austria)

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