Belfast Telegraph

Kyle is buzzing after pal Stuart opens his competitive account

By Paul Ferguson in Baku

Kyle Lafferty admitted that after good pal Stuart Dallas had scored Northern Ireland's winner on Saturday night he experienced the same emotions as if he had found the net.

The Northern Ireland striker, with 20 goals to his name, said he was 'absolutely buzzing' for Dallas to open his competitive international account with such an important strike.

Lafferty played an important role in his friend's goal.

Conor McLaughlin played the ball up to Josh Magennis who headed the ball into the box. Lafferty put pressure on the Azerbaijan defender forcing him to miscue his clearance to Jonny Evans on the edge of the box.

Evans looked as though he was going to shoot but played a measured square pass to Dallas, who took a touch and then struck the ball into the corner of the net.

"When Jonny got the ball I thought he was going to shoot," conceded Lafferty. "But he did really well to square to Stu. Stu then took a touch and when he scored I was absolutely made up for him.

"Stu and I really good friends and so when he scored the feeling I experienced was as though I had scored. I was so pleased for him - I am absolutely buzzing. I always want to try and add to my goal tally but if it wasn't going to me then I wanted it to be Stu."

Lafferty is currently a free agent after leaving Norwich City once his three-year deal finished at the end of the season.

Azerbaijan champions Qarabag made it known they wanted to sign Lafferty. However, when his agent Martin Lyon was contacted by the Baku club, negotiations broke down over the financial aspect of any proposed deal.

Belfast Telegraph


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