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England to face Ireland in November friendly clash at Wembley

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Laurens: England and Gareth Southgate have a lot of work to do (1:25)

Julien Laurens and Stewart Robson explain the issue with an England team with no left-footed players. (1:25)

England will face Ireland in a friendly international at Wembley Stadium next month after New Zealand withdrew from the fixture, the Football Association announced on Wednesday.

New Zealand pulled out of what would have been their first match at Wembley, citing player unavailability and travel restrictions arising from the coronavirus pandemic.

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"Gareth Southgate's squad will take on the Irish on Thursday Nov. 12 ahead of their last two UEFA Nations League Group fixtures away to Belgium on Nov. 15 and home to Iceland on Nov. 18," the FA said in a statement.

"In keeping with current guidelines, this game is scheduled to be played behind closed doors, although The FA has committed to working with the government to get supporters back in stadiums as soon as possible."

England will meet Ireland for the first time since a 0-0 stalemate in a friendly match at Dublin in 2015. The last six encounters between the two nations have ended up in a draw.

The most memorable match between the two happened in 1995 when the game had to be abandoned after 27 minutes due to the crowd trouble.

Earlier this month, England enjoyed an impressive 2-1 victory over Belgium before losing to Denmark in the UEFA Nations League.

During the last international break, Ireland also suffered a painful loss on penalties against Slovakia, which cost them a chance to qualify for Euro 2020.

Information from Reuters was included in this report.