Belfast Telegraph

McAuley: Let's make Greeks history and we can be heroes

By Steven Beacom

Northern Ireland star Gareth McAuley has stated that tomorrow night's Euro 2016 qualifier against Greece at Windsor Park offers his team the opportunity to become national heroes.

And the West Bromwich Albion defender insists they have the ability to deliver the country to the promised land.

Victory over the Greeks would guarantee Michael O'Neill's men a place in France next year, see them create history by becoming the first side from this country to reach the European Championship finals and allow them to follow the legendary Northern Ireland 1958, 1982 and 1986 World Cup teams who played in a major tournament.

"We know if we beat Greece we can be heroes and to qualify for a big tournament like past Northern Ireland teams have done would be very special," said McAuley, likely to be partnered by Craig Cathcart in central defence with Jonny Evans a major injury doubt.

"We are top of our group with two games left, against Greece and then in Finland on Sunday. I'd love to win both to stay top of the table and qualify in style. We have the players capable of doing that."

Belfast Telegraph