Northern Ireland will go to upset the odds says Simone Magill

Simone Magill has issued a rallying call after Northern Ireland found out their fate for next summer’s Women’s European Championship.

World Cup qualifying opponents England and Austria, who Kenny Shiels side have both played in the past week, make up Group A along with Norway.

All three of Northern Ireland’s group games are to be at Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium, with them playing Norway and Austria on July 7 and 11 respectively, with the game against the host nation on July 15.

Many will rate Northern Ireland as underdogs with this being their first major tournament, but Everton striker Magill says they are not going just to make up the numbers.

Austria head coach Irene Fuhrmann, Northern Ireland head coach Kenny Shiels, Norway head coach Martin Sjogren and England head coach Sarina Wiegman during the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 draw at O2 Victoria Warehouse, Manchester

“Everybody looks at us as little Northern Ireland, but that gives us more motivation to go and prove everybody wrong and cause upsets,” said Magill after the draw in Manchester.

“It’s attitude like that which got us here in the first place.

“We’ll get our heads down now and work really hard. We’re not just here to make up the numbers, we want to compete to win these games and that’s exactly what we’ll do.

“We’ll go into these games with no fear and give it everything in true Northern Irish spirit.”

As for being paired with familiar foes England and Austria Magill welcomed the challenge.

“You couldn’t make it up, honestly you couldn’t write it,” she said. “I said as soon as Austria got drawn in the same group as England that we would be the next team out and we were.

“They are familiar teams to us, but we’ll definitely take it. It’s a really exciting group.

“We showed the other night just how good we can be against teams like this.”