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Northern Ireland to begin 2022 by welcoming Hungary to Windsor Park for March friendly

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Kyle Lafferty scored the last time Northern Ireland played Hungary

Kyle Lafferty scored the last time Northern Ireland played Hungary

Kyle Lafferty scored the last time Northern Ireland played Hungary

Northern Ireland will play their first game at Windsor Park this year on Tuesday March 29 when they welcome Hungary to the National Stadium for a friendly.

Ian Baraclough’s men will play in front of their home fans for the first time since the draw with Switzerland on November 15 as part of their preparations for their UEFA Nations League games.

It has been almost seven years since the two sides met, with Kyle Lafferty’s late equaliser in a 1-1 draw in Belfast helping pave the way for Northern Ireland to qualify for Euro 2016.

Since then, Hungary have been a team on the up and last year they earned promotion to League A of the Nations League where they will face Italy, England and Germany, while they impressed at Euro 2020 last year.

Marco Rossi’s side held Italy and Germany to draws in the finals, although that still wasn’t enough to see them progress beyond the group stages, and are now 39th in the world rankings.

The Hungary clash will form the second part of a friendly double-header, with Northern Ireland away to Luxembourg four days earlier on Friday March 29.

The two games will be a chance for a tune-up for Baraclough ahead of their League C opener at home to Greece in June, with fixtures against Kosovo and Cyprus/Estonia to follow.

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