Belfast Telegraph

Gareth McAuley returns to full training as Northern Ireland issue injury update

Gareth McAuley
Gareth McAuley

Gareth McAuley took part in full training with Northern Ireland on Friday as he bids to return for Sunday's game against Belarus.

The Rangers defender sat out Thursday's 2-0 victory over Estonia with a hamstring injury but assistant manager Jimmy Nicholl has confirmed that McAuley is fit to come into contention for the second game of the double-header.

Corry Evans (hamstring) and Gavin Whyte (thigh) remain injured after missing Thursday's game.

Nicholl cautioned against making too many changes to the side after the victory over Estonia.

“You can make these decisions based on fitness levels, but if you bring one out you’ve got to make sure the next one is going to contribute,” he said.

“We’re not going to play them just because they’re fresh. You’ve got to play them because they can do an equal job. I wouldn’t like to think there’ll be too many changes to be honest.”

Northern Ireland are determined to make it two wins from two in their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign on Sunday as they look to take a strong place in Group C ahead of later games against the fancied Germany and the Netherlands.

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