It is not uncommon to see strikers suffering goal droughts but what is rare is seeing them go over 1000 minutes without scoring a goal. Strikers live for goals, and when they don’t come, doubts begin to creep in.

Southampton striker, Shane Long is hoping to end his 8-month goal drought with a goal that will probably be his biggest and put the goal drought to an abrupt end. The Ireland striker wants a goal to keep his country’s World Cup hopes alive and personally end what has been a long stretch of personal torment and anguish for him.

Long last scored a goal for club and country back in February, the final goal in 4-0 victory two weeks before the League Cup final at Wembley, which his team lost 3-2 to Manchester United with bet365 free bet provided some great odds for the game. The Republic of Ireland star will be hoping to make a mark for Martin O’Neill’s men who travel to Wales in their final World Cup qualifier. Both teams could still go top of the group which ensures automatic World Cup qualification, but the winner of the clash most likely will head to the Playoffs for yet another opportunity at making the mundial.

Long has failed to score in 24 matches that has seen fall down the pecking order at his club. He struggled for starts last season as Italian striker, Manolo Gabbiadini became top dog following his January arrival from Napoli and this season has been relegated to cameo appearances because of his lack of goals. He has played a remarkable 1108 minutes of football without his strike hitting the back of the net. He has only started six of the nineteen games he has played for the South Coast club in that time and had only completed 90 minutes just thrice.

An Ireland win will see them qualify automatically only if group leaders, Serbia stumble at home to Georgia. Long will be hoping that a goal tonight will take his team to the World Cup. He is a classy player known for his pace, ability to draw out defenders and fierce competitive spirit. He joined Southampton from West Brom in 2015 and has 25 goals in over 100 matches which look to be a fair performance and sound he kicked the soccer balls properly.