Point pleases Northern Ireland

Published: Friday 25 July 2008, 1.45CET
Northern Ireland 1-1 Belarus
Northern Ireland picked up their first-ever point at the top level of international female football as they ended Group 1 with a draw.
Point pleases Northern Ireland
Northern Ireland finished three points behind Belarus in Group 1 ©UEFA

Match statistics

Northern IrelandBelarus

Goals scored1
 
1
Yellow cards1
 
0
Red cards0
 
0
Goal attempts1
 
1
Attempts off target0
 
0
Corners0
 
0
Fouls committed0
 
0
Published: Friday 25 July 2008, 1.45CET

Point pleases Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland 1-1 Belarus
Northern Ireland picked up their first-ever point at the top level of international female football as they ended Group 1 with a draw.
Northern Ireland picked up their first-ever point at the top level of international female football as they ended UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2009™ qualifying Group 1 with a draw against Belarus.

Late leveller
The home side needed a five-goal win to move ahead of fourth-placed Belarus, and took the lead on 38 minutes through Stacey Hall. Maryna Lis equalised late on, but it was a satisfying finish for Northern Ireland whose previous record in main qualifying groups was 16 defeats in 1984, 1987 and 1991 plus seven in this pool.

Home side ahead
Having returned to female competition in the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup with seven points in the non-competition Group 7, Northern Ireland beat Croatia and Georgia to move into the UEFA WOMEN'S EURO 2009™main qualifying stage and showed they were determined to get off the mark tonight by piling on the pressure from early. The deadlock was deservedly broken when Demi Vance's header was punched clear by Svitlana Novikava only for Hall to turn the ball in.

Wylie pleased
Belarus, in the main section of UEFA European Women's Championship qualifying for the first time, picked up their game in the second half and finally beat Emma Higgins with six minutes left through Lis. Still, the point pleased Northern Ireland manager Alfie Wylie, who said: "The highlight of the campaign has definitely been the improvements that all the girls have shown, their fitness, organisation, belief and their desire for the game. They have done me, their families and themselves proud. Belarus beat us by five the last time we played them but we turned it all around tonight, having had many knocks along the way."

Group deciders
Group 1 will be decided in the two remaining fixtures in which England visit the Czech Republic on 28 September and Spain on 2 October. England, ahead of Spain on head-to-head record and two points in front of the Czech Republic, will top the pool with two draws. Spain know a win would be enough, the scoreline depending on England's previous result, while the Czech Republic require a 5-0 victory and a draw in the other game. Both the second and third team in the pool are assured of play-off berths.

Last updated: 29/08/08 15.19CET

Related information

Team profiles

Lineup

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland

Belarus

Belarus

1Emma Higgins (GK)1Svitlana Novikava (GK)
3Kelly Bailie2Nina Akhrymuk
Substitution68'
5Julie Nelson3Alina Vasilyeva
6Una Harkin5Oksana Shpak
7Nadene Caldwell4Irina Nikolaeva
8Kimberley Turner9Svetlana Astashova
2Lyndsay Corry10Natallia Ryzhevich (C)
Substitution80'
10Stacey Hall (C)
Goal40'
Yellow Card79'
11Alesia Baranava
11Demi Vance13Tatsiana Kiose
Goal84'
13Sara Booth17Marina Lis
17Catherine Hyndman18Olga Manzhuk

Substitutes

12Kirsty Eddis (GK)12Inna Botyanovskaya (GK)
14Danielle McDowell8Aliaksandra Valko
Substitution68'
16Clare Carson6Ekaterina Miklashevich
15Melissa McCurdy7Olga Radko
14Alena Buzinova
Substitution80'
15Ekaterina Aukhimovich
16Anastasia Shaiko

Coach

Alfie Wylie (NIR) Uladzimir Kasakouski (BLR)

Referee

Mihaela Gurdon Basimamovic (CRO)

Assistant referees

Lidja Kunstek (CRO), Lada Rojc (CRO)

Fourth official

Ruthanne Wright (NIR)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution

See also

  • Northern Ireland

    Northern Ireland

    Next match womensworldcup: v Estonia, 24 July 2010
  • Belarus

    Belarus

    Next match womensworldcup: v Netherlands, 21 August 2010
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