EURO 2016: Michael O’Neill ready to oust ‘The General’ at Windsor Park

Michael O'Neill
Michael O'Neill

Michael O’Neill insists Northern Ireland are ready to oust ‘The General’ at Windsor Park on Saturday night.

A crunch Euro 2016 qualifier with Romania lies in wait for O’Neill and his players in south Belfast (7.45pm kick-off).

Northern Ireland sit second in Group F after collecting 12 points from a possible 15 – just one point behind tonight’s opponents.

Victory for either side would represent a significant stride towards next summer’s European Championship.

Sitting in the away dugout will be Anghel Iordănescu – the Romania boss affectionately nicknamed ‘The General’.

The former striker – who guided Romania to the 1994 World Cup quarter-finals – boasts a diverse CV that includes stints in military command and politics.

He came out of football retirement last October to take charge of Romania for the third time.

Asked by one journalist whether he was ready to ‘wage guerrilla warfare on The General’, O’Neill laughed: “I wouldn’t go as far as as a guerrilla war – but we will be prepared for a tough match.

“The Romanian players are very technical but they are also very tough and they’ve shown that in the games.

“But we equally have a good physical presence in our team. Lafferty, Evans, McAuley, Baird; –they are all strong, competitive players and we also have good technical players around that, too. It is set up for a good game.”

O’Neill suffered a blow on Friday when goalkeeper Roy Carroll was ruled out with a stomach complaint.

Michael McGovern is now set to make his competitive debut.