Ireland face England (1.30pm) in their final pool outing in the Hockey World Cup knowing a positive result against their neighbours is likely to see the Green Machine advance to the knock-out stages.

Alexander Cox's side are without a win from their opening two games, but a draw could be enough to see Ireland advance depending on results elsewhere.

After beginning their campaign with a credible 2-1 defeat to holders Australia and picking up a point in the 1-1 draw with China, Ireland side sit third in the standings on one point.

That places them ahead of England on goal difference, who are a point ahead in second place.

The Chinese have drawn both of their games thus far, but will come up against reigning champions Australia later today.

Should they lose and Ireland win or draw against England, Cox's side would go through in second place, which should result in a preferable cross-over match in the first phase of the knock-out stages at the India-hosted tournament.

Alan Sothern grabbed the all-important equaliser against China in the last game and the La Gantoise forward said that the mood is very positive within the Ireland camp heading into this vital match.

"The guys are in great form and in good spirits and looking forward to the game," said Sothern.

"We do a lot of homework and watch a lot of video so we are very clear on what we want to do, and we have a good idea of what we think England are going to try and do.

"So it is all about us going out there on the pitch and implementing our game-plan."

Follow live updates from the Ireland v England Hockey World Cup encounter on RTE.ie and the News Now App from 1:15pm on Friday.