Northern Ireland disappointed with Luxembourg draw
Wednesday 12 September 2012
Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill has been left disappointed after seeing his side draw at home with minnows Luxembourg in a World Cup qualifier, the BBC has reported.
O’Neill’s side went in front after 14 minutes through Dean Shiels but a late goal - eventually given as a Ryan McGivern own goal - gave Luxembourg a point. Ireland had three strikes - all from Rangers forward Kyle Lafferty - disallowed and will have to face Portugal in their next group game without West Bromwich Albion defender Gareth McAuley, who picked up a second yellow card in as many games and will be suspended for the forthcoming contest.
Having taken an early lead, O’Neill blamed a shoddy second-half showing for allowing Luxembourg back into the match. He said: “I'm very disappointed - we had enough chances to win more than one game and we didn't capitalise. We let our standards drop in the second half, they got a bit of belief and they punished us.”
O’Neill added that he thought the team’s energy levels dropped after the break and that their passing became wayward, handing the initiative to the visitors.
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