When Paul Smyth hit the winning goal in the 2-1 friendly victory over South Korea at the National Stadium in March 2018 he became the first Norther Ireland player to score on their international debut in over 17 years.
The QPR winger was on the pitch for less than four minutes when he found the net in front of the Kop to emulate the achievement of George McCartney who scored on his first appearance in September 2001 in a 3-0 success against Iceland.
The diminutive Smyth began his career in the Irish League with Linfield establishing himself as a Windsor Park favourite helping the Blues to a 52nd league title in 2016/17.
He also won a Irish Cup and County Antrim Shield medals that season as well as earning Northern Ireland honours at both under-19 and under-21 level.
After much speculation Smyth was snapped up by Championship outfit Queens Park Rangers for an undisclosed fee at the start of the 2017/18 season on a two-year deal
He announced his arrival to first-team football with the Hoops in spectacular fashion when he scored the winner in the 2-1 victory over Cardiff City at Loftus Road on New Year’s Day 2018.
Smyth was a regular member of the first-team squad with the west-London club for the remainder of the season and his impressive performances earned him QPR’s Supporters Young Player of the Year.
The former Crumlin Colts youth player struggled to force his way into manager Steve McLaren’s plans for the 2018/19 campaign and he eventually ended up securing a four-month loan deal at League One Accrington Stanley.
In January 2019, Smyth agreed a one-year extension to his contract which ties him to Loftus Road until the summer of 2021.
Ahead of the 2019/20 season season Smyth joined League One side Wycombe Wanderers on a 12 month loan deal.
In June 2021 Smyth signed for League Two outfit Leyton Orient helping them gain promotion back to League One the following season.
Smyth returned to his former club Queens Park Rangers on a three-year deal in the summer of 2023 and, after an absence of over two years, earned a recall into Michael O'Neill's senior squad for the EURO 2024 games against Slovenia and Kazakhstan.
|Queens Park Rangers
|10th September 1997
|Place of Birth
|5'7 / 1.75m
|10.12 / 69kg
|24th Mar 2018 v South Korea (h) (won 2-1)
Senior International Stats
UEFA EURO 2024 Qualifiers