MILESTONE: Julie Nelson poised to become first Northern Ireland international to win 100 caps

Julie Nelson will become the first Northern Ireland women's international to reach 100 caps in Tuesday night's World Cup qualifier against Slovakia.

Monday, 3rd September 2018, 11:44 pm
Updated Tuesday, 4th September 2018, 12:48 pm
Northern Ireland's Julie Nelson pictured in the new Northern Ireland shirt by adidas launched today (Monday).

The 33-year-old Larne woman will be hoping to help Northern Ireland end their campaign on a winning note at Shamrock Park, Portadown (Kick-off 7:45pm)

Northern Ireland’s only points in their seven games in Group C came in their 3-1 win in Slovakia last November.

“Reaching 100 caps will be a proud moment for me,” Nelson told the Irish FA website.

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Alfie Wylie’s side go into the game at Portadown after Friday’s 4-0 hammering by the Republic of Ireland in Dublin.

Crusaders Strikers centre-back Nelson, whose previous clubs include Everton and Glasgow City, made her international debut against Portugal in March 2004.

She would have almost certainly reached the milestone earlier but for a serious knee injury sustained in 2005 which ruled her out for more than a year.

“It’s an achievement I never thought I would reach when I started playing,” added Nelson, who works as a women’s football ambassador for the Irish FA.

“I’ve enjoyed every minute of playing for Northern Ireland over the last 14 years.”

Nelson scored Northern Ireland’s first goal in the win in Slovakia 10 months ago when Rachel Furness and Caragh Milligan were also on target.

Tuesday’s Group C game will be live on BBC Sport Northern Ireland website and the BBC red button.

Netherlands lead Norway by one point with the top two meeting in Oslo tonight to decide who progresses.