Michael McGovern hailed by Northern Irish boss O’Neill

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill praised his goalkeeper, Michael McGovern. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire
Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill praised his goalkeeper, Michael McGovern. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire
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Michael O’Neill hailed Hamilton Accies goalkeeper Michael McGovern after Northern Ireland qualified for Euro 2016’s last-16 stage last night.

The 31-year-old is only set to be associated with the New Douglas Park club for a few more days, as his contract is due to expire at the end of this month.

He will have suitors queuing up after his performance in the 1-0 defeat by Germany at Parc des Princes. Northern Ireland qualified as a third-placed team after Turkey beat Czech Republic 2-0 last night.

O’Neill’s side are two goals better than Turkey in goal difference – and McGovern is a significant reason for that. Northern Ireland will play either Wales or France this weekend.

“He (McGovern) did not put a foot wrong all night,” said O’Neill. “The players gave him a round of applause when he came into the dressing room. It was a phenomenal performance and up there with great goalkeeper performances we have had going back to Pat Jennings and Tommy Wright and Maik Taylor.

“I am delighted for Michael. He has waited a long time to play regularly at both club and international level.”