O'Neill urges positive start from players

12 June 2015 04:35:12 EST

Martin O'Neill will tell his Republic of Ireland players they must get on the "front foot" in a crucial Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland in Dublin on Saturday.

The Irish are looking to build on a late rally which produced a last-minute 1-1 draw against leaders Poland last time out and avenge for a 1-0 defeat by Gordon Strachan's men in November last year.

"Scotland have got a bit of momentum, but I think we've only lost one of our last seven or eight games so we've got a bit of momentum."

Martin O'Neill

With world champions Germany expected to pick up maximum points against whipping boys Gibraltar on Saturday, O'Neill knows the visit of Scotland takes on extra significance if Strachan's men are to be reeled in.

The Scots are third in Group D and O'Neill believes home advantage will count for a lot when the two nations meet.

He wants his players to take the game to their rivals and make it an uncomfortable afternoon at the Aviva Stadium.

"Our job really is to be on the front foot as early as possible in the game - I think that's important. We're at home and we want to try and start the game the way we finished against Poland," he told reporters in his press briefing.

"They've got decent pace in the team, and I think they're confident within themselves.

"Scotland have got a bit of momentum, but I think we've only lost one of our last seven or eight games so we've got a bit of momentum."

O'Neill expects to have captain Robbie Keane, who this week signed a new contract to stay with LA Galaxy, available but Bournemouth midfielder Harry Arter is a concern because of hip and groin problems.

Republic of Ireland are currently priced 1/1 in the match betting and the draw outcome is quoted 1/1. Scotland are available to back at 1/1.

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