Ireland will play England in a competitive men's soccer match for the first time since March 1991 after being drawn alongside the Three Lions in the upcoming 2024/25 UEFA Nations League campaign.
Ireland, who remain managerless following the departure of Stephen Kenny last November, have been drawn alongside England, Finland, and Greece in Group B2 of the Nations League, which is due to kick off in September.
"It's tough, but exciting, some amazing games and obviously we're playing England for the first time in a while," Football Association of Ireland director of football Marc Canham said after Thursday's draw, according to RTÉ.
"It's a great opportunity for our players and team and our amazing fans, an experience they can really look forward to."
CONFIRMED | 2024 UEFA Nations League
Ireland will face England, Finland & Greece in League B2 🇮🇪February 8, 2024
Ireland has not played competitively against England since March 1991 when the two faced off at Wembley Stadium, resulting in a 1-1 draw.
The two teams have, however, played four friendly international matches.
In February 1995, the teams played at Dublin's Landsdowne Road venue, but the match was abandoned due to English crowd trouble.
Then managed by Jack Charlton, Ireland were leading 1-0 through a David Kelly goal when English fans began throwing debris at Irish fans in the stands below.
The riots were condemned on both sides of the Irish Sea, with Irish manager Jack Charlton describing it as a "disaster for Irish football" and English manager Terry Venables called the rioting "terrible" and said he did not have words strong enough to describe it.
It was nearly 20 years before another Irish-English friendly was staged in May 2013 at Wembley Stadium, which ended in a 1-1 draw.
Two years later, the teams faced off again in Dublin at the Aviva Stadium, resulting in a 0-0 draw.
They last played against each other in November 2020 in a hastily-arranged friendly at Wembley during the Covid-19 pandemic, with England running out comfortable 3-0 winners.
The last time we faced England at Wembley in front of fans 😍🎯 pic.twitter.com/yBn3sPkENb— Ireland Football ⚽️🇮🇪 (@IrelandFootball) February 8, 2024
Ireland have not beaten England since a memorable 1-0 victory in Stuttgart in the European Championships in 1988. The two sides had drawn five consecutive games before England's win during the pandemic.
Ireland have also struggled in recent games against Finland and Greece, losing twice against Greece in the Euro 2024 Qualifiers last year.
Ireland have never beaten Greece, only managing one draw in five games against them.
They also suffered back-to-back 1-0 defeats against Finland during the 2020/21 Nations League campaign.
Ireland last beat Finland in an international friendly in August 2002.
Should Ireland finish bottom of their group, they will be relegated to League C of the Nations League for the 2026/27 season.
If they manage to top the group, they will be promoted to League A, the top tier of Nations League football.
A second-place finish will see Ireland qualify for a promotion play-off against a team from League A, while a third-place finish will send them to a relegation play-off against a team from League C.
The Nations League will begin with two fixtures in September, which will be followed by a further two fixtures in October, and a final set of fixtures in November, with each team playing each other home and away.