Belfast Telegraph

Oliver Norwood: Now we must beat the Faroe Islands

By Julian Taylor

Oliver Norwood gave his all for Northern Ireland in Hungary – but he knows that the fine win in Budapest on game one of the Euro 2016 qualifying campaign will mean very little if the Faroe Islands are not accounted for next month.

The north Atlantic minnows have something of a hex on Northern Ireland, having drawn with the Green and White Army during Nigel Worthington's reign.

But with three Group F points in the bag and a team now bursting with fresh self-belief, midfielder Norwood knows Northern Ireland can fine tune their momentum for the upcoming clash at Windsor Park.

"We have to win – it's as simple as that," vowed Norwood.

"This is the type of game where we've done not so well in the past, the smaller nations where we often haven't done ourselves justice when we've been expected to win.

"But this gives us real confidence now. We've got to go and beat the Faroes now, we can't take them for granted.

"If we get anywhere near as good a performance as we gave against Hungary I really don't see why we can't go on and get the win we need."

Unsurprisingly, the terrier-like 23-year-old, who moved to Reading from Huddersfield Town in the summer, savoured the vibe from victory over the Magyars.

"I think 'unbelievable' sums it all up really," admitted Norwood. "It was a fantastic performance, especially when you see how we came back after going a goal down. It shows you what we can do now.

"It's a good start to the campaign. It's only the second time I have experienced a win with Northern Ireland in 18 games now, so we have to cherish these moments. But it's a long campaign with 10 games, and we need to be ready to go again.

"We always believe in the dressing room and Michael has set us up well. We stuck to our game plan, the subs gave us something extra, and big Laff was different class the way he worked and was an outlet for us up front. He got the goal which he fully deserved."

Belfast Telegraph


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