Ian Baraclough proud of how young Northern Ireland side matched Switzerland



Posted Thursday, September 09, 2021 by PA

Ian Baraclough proud of how young Northern Ireland side matched Switzerland

Ian Baraclough told his young Northern Ireland players to be “very, very proud” of their display in a goalless World Cup qualifying draw with Switzerland.

Though they needed another penalty save from Bailey Peacock-Farrell to avoid a defeat on the night, Northern Ireland created the better chances from open play and more than matched a side ranked 37 places above them in the world.

The draw leaves Northern Ireland three points behind Switzerland in Group C, but with the same opposition up next they still retain a chance to go second.

Both sides were missing key players on the night, but without the likes of Jonny Evans, Stuart Dallas, Corry Evans, Josh Magennis and Paddy McNair, Baraclough again had to name a youthful line-up but was rewarded with industry and purpose.

“We had to be patient, compact, resolute and organised, and we had that in abundance,” Baraclough said.

“We tried to control the ball when we had it and be positive. Sometimes we lacked that killer ball but we still looked dangerous and I was energised by what I saw in the performance, and the enthusiasm, and the crowd clearly played their part in that and I was very, very proud.

“You look at the players that were missing, take nothing away from the boys coming in, but Jonny, Corry, Paddy McNair, Josh, Stuart Dallas, they’re big, big players.

“So to put in a performance like that against a top nation, albeit missing players as well, it gives us nothing to fear next month when we go to Geneva in search of the points.”

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