Stephen Kenny's Republic of Ireland side could have to wait until days before Euro 2020 starts next summer to seal a place in the finals if the coronavirus pandemic creates further problems with scheduling.
The Boys In Green are due to face Slovakia in play-off semi-final on 8 October, and an Irish victory in Bratislava would then lead to a final play-off- decider against the winner of Northern Ireland's match against Bosnia and Herzegovina in November.
However, European football's governing body has announced the adoption of 'special measures' on Thursday designed to ensure the games go ahead amid the coronavirus pandemic.
It said that in the event of players being ordered to be quarantined or to self-isolate, matches would go ahead as planned provided there were at least 13 players available, including at least one goalkeeper.
However, if that was not possible, a UEFA document stated "the match will be rescheduled at a date to be fixed by the UEFA administration, including May-June 2021 preceding the start of the UEFA Euro 2020 final tournament".
The finals are due to begin on 11 June next year, with the Aviva Stadium set to host three group games and a last-16 fixture.
It added that the UEFA administration would retain the power to switch the match to a neutral venue if necessary, with the designated home team responsible for the staging costs.
The semi-finals are all due to take place on Thursday, 8 October and the play-off finals are scheduled for Thursday, 12 November.