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Julian Taylor

On a day when Windsor Park paid tribute to Billy Bingham, this disjointed Northern Ireland team couldn't be further from the grand master's well-organised sides

Julian Taylor


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A minute's applause for Billy Bingham before Sunday's game at Windsor Park in Belfast. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

A minute's applause for Billy Bingham before Sunday's game at Windsor Park in Belfast. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

A minute's applause for Billy Bingham before Sunday's game at Windsor Park in Belfast. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

What was already a tetchy Sunday service at Windsor Park drew a collective chorus of gloom the moment Andronikos Kakoulli headed Cyprus into the lead.

Paddy McNair and Jonny Evans may have teased out a 2-2 draw as a reward for late sweat – but this was an desperate affair, when the Northern Ireland faithful were looking down the barrel of another embarrassment. A last chance to carve out some hope from a miserable Nations League campaign under Ian Baraclough, a decent man, trying to resist surging criticism.


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