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Saturday, September 5, 2015

Northern Ireland Men's National Soccer Team News

September 4, 2015 - Gareth McAuley scores brace in win over Faroe Islands
"Faroe Islands 1-3 Northern Ireland. Defender Gareth McAuley struck in each half as Northern Ireland's Group F qualification ambitions received a massive boost at the Tórsvøllur.... West Bromwich Albion defender McAuley had guided a low Oliver Norwood set piece past Gunnar Nielsen for his early first goal as the visitors began the quicker. A steady flow of corners and controlled defensive play signalled their superiority until they were undone by a long throw. Ragnar Nattestad gained control in the area and squared for the well-positioned Edmundsson to tap home the equaliser. With the contest in the balance following a half of few chances, Edmundsson's dismissal altered the momentum in favour of the away team. McAuley struck and then Lafferty showed the composure of a man ranked the second-top marksman in qualifying by turning in the third." - UEFA

March 29, 2015 - Kyle Lafferty scores brace in win over Finland
"Kyle Lafferty scored both goals as Northern Ireland beat Finland to boost their chances of a first major finals appearance since the 1986 World Cup. With four wins from five games, they trail Romania by a point at the top of Euro 2016 Qualifying Group F. Lafferty scored with a right-foot volley and then made it five goals from five qualifiers with a guided header. Berat Sadik grabbed a late consolation for the Finns after Roy Carroll spilled Roman Eremonko's initial drive." - BBC

October 14, 2014 - Jamie Ward & Kyle Lafferty score in win over Greece
"Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill admits his history-making side are well ahead of schedule on the road to Euro 2016 after claiming a third successive win, with star striker Kyle Lafferty already setting his sights on the finals in France. No Northern Ireland side have ever before won their first three matches in any World Cup or European campaign, but O’Neill’s men secured a wonderful 2-0 victory to add Claudio Ranieri’s Greece to a list of victims that already included Hungary and the Faroe Islands. Jamie Ward’s second international goal, a deflected eighth-minute effort, got the ball rolling before the Derby man set up Lafferty for a superb second on the counter-attack." - Guardian

October 11, 2014 - Gareth McAuley & Kyle Lafferty score in win over Faroe Islands
"Michael O'Neill's Northern Ireland claimed a solid victory over the Faroe Islands at Windsor Park, thanks to goals from Gareth McAuley and Kyle Lafferty..... O'Neill's side, ranked 71st in the FIFA rankings, took an early lead in Belfast through West Brom defender McAuley, who poked home his fifth goal for his country at the far post following a corner. A Faroes side ranked more than 100 places below Norn Iron by world football's governing body regrouped, but in the 20th minute they found themselves two goals behind. After Lafferty had only failed to connect with a Shane Ferguson cross by a matter of inches, the Norwich striker doubled the hosts' lead with a clever flick past Faroes' keeper Gunnar Nielsen." - Mirror

September 7, 2014 - McGinn & Lafferty score in win over Hungary
"Kyle Lafferty's late goal gave Northern Ireland their first competitive away win since 2010 on Sunday as they scored twice in the final 10 minutes to beat Hungary 2-1 in their opening Euro 2016 Group F qualifier. Hungary appeared to be heading for victory when Balazs Dzsudzsak's vicious inswinging corner was nodded in by substitute Tamas Priskin in the 75th minute. The visitor's response was emphatic with substitute Niall McGinn tapping the ball into the empty net six minutes later after fine work by Lafferty. The 26-year-old Lafferty then grabbed the winner when he was first to react to bundle in a loose ball after McGinn's dangerous cross." - EuroSport

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