Martin O'Neill's men opened the campaign with a battling draw against Serbia and Ireland have since moved to the top of their section by virtue of wins against Georgia, Moldova and Austria respectively.
The Boys in Green have been beaten in just one of their last 11 competitive fixtures on home soil and, having won each of their last four home qualification matches without conceding, O'Neill's side will fancy their chances of making home advantage count against Chris Coleman's side.
Much was expected of Wales ahead of this campaign following the Dragons' dramatic run to the last four at Euro 2016 but, despite a thumping 4-0 win against Moldova in their opening group game, Coleman's team are under pressure ahead of this tie.
Wales have been held in each of their last three fixtures on the road to Russia and it is imperative that they get back to winning ways in this one if they are to get back in the race to take their place at the World Cup for the first time since 1958; the 2016 European Championship semi-finalists can be backed at 9/4 (3.25) to kickstart their campaign with a crucial win.
The Dragons, though, have a far from convincing record on the road, for Wales have won just three of their last 11 away fixtures - excluding their participation in France last summer; furthermore, Wales have won just four of their last 24 World Cup qualifiers away from home.
Ireland have conceded just two goals in their last 14 home victories and Paddy Power offer 11/8 (2.38) that the hosts shut out the Dragons and 5/2 (3.50) that the Boys in Green win to nil - a selection that would have seen punters profit from each of Ireland's last six home victories.
Wales, though, offer a potent attacking threat and Coleman's side will be confident of making their mark after scoring in all but one of their last 10 ties; there is 11/10 (2.10) that both teams are on target in Friday's fixture.
Ireland's home record in competitive fixtures, however, is admirable and the value could lie in backing Paddy Power's 7/5 (2.40) quote for O'Neill's side to deliver once again in Dublin.
|Republic of Ireland to win at 7/5 (2.40) for a 2pt stake with Paddy Power|