Northern Ireland v Korea Republic

Words Marshall Gillespie


In today’s programme we take a look at Northern Ireland’s record in international friendly matches down the years.

The encounter with Korea Republic will be Northern Ireland’s 112th international challenge match. Their record to date is: P W D L F A Home 52 15 15 22 57 81 Away 51 10 16 25 39 90 Neutral 8 0 1 7 3 17 Total 111 25 32 54 99 188

The crowd of 16,893 which attended the challenge game versus Croatia in November 2016 was the biggest to see

a Northern Ireland friendly international at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park since 20,000 watched the 1-1 draw with Denmark in March 1986. Our scorer was the late great Alan McDonald who was winning the fourth of his 52 caps that evening.

Former manager Lawrie McMenemy gave Aaron Hughes his senior international debut exactly 20 years tomorrow when in his first match in charge of Northern Ireland. The boys in green defeated Slovakia 1-0 at home thanks to a 51st minute Steve Lomas strike. Aaron has since won 109 caps for his country… and counting!

One of the fastest, if not the fastest, goals ever scored in Belfast by a Northern Ireland player happened 30 years ago on 23 March 1988 when the Luton Town midfielder Danny Wilson scored a screamer after just 56 seconds of a 1-1 draw with Poland.

Not surprisingly Aaron Hughes - 37 games - has been involved in more friendly matches than any other member of the squad originally announced for today’s contest. Skipper Steven Davis is next with 30, while both Gareth McAuley and Kyle Lafferty have played in 20 apiece.

The Korea Republic game will be Michael O’Neill’s 18th friendly as Northern Ireland boss. His record in the previous 17 matches is: P W D L F A Home 7 4 1 2 9 9 Away 9 0 4 5 1 12 Neutral 1 0 1 0 1 1 Total 17 4 6 7 11 22


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