Simone Magill’s Northern Ireland dream to get ‘over the line’ for EURO 2022

Simone Magill is both relishing and recognising the challenge as Northern Ireland stand one match away from securing a landmark women’s EURO 2022 finals spot.

Monday, 12th April 2021, 5:00 pm

Magill’s goal last week helped to secure a vital 2-1 advantage in Ukraine across the play-off first-leg clash ahead of tomorrow’s Seaview meeting.

Although Northern Ireland hold the upper hand before the Belfast clash, Magill is aware history remains at the halfway stage with “a big 90 minutes ahead”.

“We’ve been underdogs our whole lives and we’ve got this far being an underdog,” said Magill, who was joined on the scoresheet by Rachel Furness. “We love a challenge....when we came here we were confident and we will be confident going into Tuesday.

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Northern Ireland’s Simone Magill competing in Ukraine. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

“But we recognise that there’s still a very long way to go...a big 90 minutes ahead of us.

“But we will be giving it absolutely everything like we did tonight to hopefully get us over the line.”

Furness broke the deadlock before limping off due to injury, with Ukraine level ahead of Magill’s composed finish.

“It was a great moment for us,” said Magill. “We know how important it is to come away and not only try to get to a result but an away goal.

“So I think it was crucial for us.

“Overall, it’s probably not one of our best performances and we know we can do a lot better.

“Going into Tuesday we’re going to hope we can keep the ball better and do more of what we’re good at.

“Lucky, we got a good result here to take us into Tuesday so hopefully we can build on that and just get the ball out from the back and keep it.

“It shows the character in this group...not only did we get a goal but it was backs-against-the-wall for the last 10 or 15 minutes but we really dug in deep and had players who were outstanding.

“It’s not just about the 11 players on the pitch, it’s about everybody in the whole squad.

“The ball just came in over the top (for the goal)...it just fell to me at the right angle.”

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