Uefa Nations League: Austria 1-0 Northern Ireland

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    Jamal Lewis and Valentino Lazaro challenge for possession during the match in Vienna

    Northern Ireland’s Nations League hopes suffered a major setback as Marko Arnautovic’s second-half goal condemned them to a 1-0 defeat by Austria.

    NI had lost their opening game 2-1 to Bosnia-Herzegovina in Group B3 of the competition in September.

    Arnautovic ran in behind Paddy McNair and slipped the ball past Bailey Peacock-Farrell for the winner.

    Paddy McNair and Steven Davis had chances while Will Grigg’s late header cannoned off the inside of the post.

    Northern Ireland are bottom without a point and in danger of relegation to the third-tier Group C with games against the Bosnians in Sarajevo on Monday and Austria in Belfast in November still to come.

    Austria move into contention to win the group with this victory but Bosnia-Herzegovina remain top on six points, having also beaten the Austrians 1-0 last month.

    The inaugural Nations League offers countries a potential backdoor route to the Euro 2020 finals if they fail to finish in the top two of their qualifying groups for the tournament.

    This match was NI’s sixth of 2018 as they continue their build-up to that qualification campaign, which runs from March to November next year.

    More to follow.

    View the original article: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/45755080


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