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Saturday 02 Dec 2023
Oxtoby: Everyone played part in win over Albania

Northern Ireland boss Tanya Oxtoby said everyone contributed to her side’s emphatic win over Albania in the UEFA Women’s Nations League.

A Simone Magill double followed by goals from Danielle Maxwell and sub Megan Bell fired Oxtoby’s side to a 4-0 success in Tirana.

Speaking to @NorthernIreland pitchside at the Arena Kombëtare, the manager said: “We spoke about making sure we didn’t give them anything and if they were to get anything out of the game it was that we’ve made them earn it.

“Everyone contributed on the night which was excellent and some of the things we’ve been working on in training came off consistently so there’s progress there.

“Tuesday evening’s game (against Republic of Ireland) is going to be a new challenge for us to take the performance from tonight and be able to apply that against a team that is in form.”

Oxtoby, who was appointed as Northern Ireland boss in the summer, revealed: “We wanted to be super aggressive in terms of our defence and make sure that when we did lose it we were in positions to win it back quickly and I thought we did that exceptionally well and we also asked at half-time to be a little bit more clinical in the final third which, again, we got in the second half.”

There were debuts for Crusaders stopper Maddy Harvey-Clifford and young Linfield striker Keri Halliday. Harvey-Clifford started in goal and kept a clean sheet while Halliday was introduced as a sub midway through the second half.

“I think everybody is super-psyched for them both,” Oxtoby added. “They performed well and for them to be a part of this squad it just shows the trajectory that we’re on.

“You can’t wipe the smiles off their faces – I’m really pleased for them and their families and long may it continue that they are part of this squad.”

Northern Ireland welcome Republic of Ireland to the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park on Tuesday evening. You can buy tickets for the game here

Watch: Northern Ireland manager Tanya Oxtoby on win Albania