Belfast Telegraph

O'Neill opts for Lyon as Northern Ireland Euro 2016 base

By Steven Beacom

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill has revealed that he has changed the team's training base for the Euro 2016 finals to Lyon following the group draw earlier this month.

O'Neill and the Irish FA had originally planned to set up camp in Perpignan in the south of France, but have now opted for the more central Lyon, which plays host to Northern Ireland's second game in Group C against Ukraine on June 16.

Prior to that Northern Ireland will travel south to Nice for the opening group match on June 12 with the last match against World Champions Germany in Paris on June 21 seeing them travel north.

The move to Lyon means more time in one place for the players and fewer air miles.

It was O'Neill himself who advised the IFA to switch venues feeling his side would be more comfortable in Lyon.

"We were going to be in Perpignan, but we will now be based just outside Lyon. That has been driven by the fixtures which came out for us in the draw," said O'Neill, named Coach of the Year at Sunday's BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards.

"It will mean we will have minimal travel and our preparation will be as good as possible.

"It is a great facility with a beautiful restaurant and we are pleased with what we have. It is just outside the city, north of Lyon."

Belfast Telegraph