Wednesday, May 24, 2017

We have given ourselves a great chance – O´Neill

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 16 Jun 2016

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Michael O’Neill believes Northern Ireland’s 2-0 victory over Ukraine has given them a “great chance” of reaching the knockout stages at Euro 2016.

Second-half goals from defender Gareth McAuley and substitute Niall McGinn secured Northern Ireland their first win at a major international tournament since the 1982 World Cup.

They had never previously triumphed at a European Championship finals, yet now go into their final Group C game against Germany with legitimate last 16 hopes.

O’Neill – who made five changes to the side that started the 1-0 defeat to Poland last Sunday – wants his players to enjoy the moment before they have to focus on facing the world champions in Paris.

“We have given ourselves a great chance,” he said. 

“It will take various permutations for us not to finish third. That gives us a shout at least.

“What we need to do is try to nick a point [against Germany]. We will let the players enjoy this and then the minds will switch to the Germans.

“It’s hard to put into words and absorb it all at this time. Everything good about Northern Ireland was in that stadium today.”

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