At the beginning of the draw for the Euro 2022, Northern Ireland looked to be in an impossible group. Drawn with Germany and the Netherlands it was imperative for the nation to win its first two matches against fellow group contenders Belarus and Estonia.

Within past weekend Northern Ireland has been able to achieve this with hard-fought victories at Estonia and at home to Belarus putting the nation top of the table.  Jonny Evans one of the star players is delighted with his country’s start to the qualifiers.

Speaking after the game against Belarus, Evans alluded to the fact that the equalizing goal by Belarus sent jitters through the team for a while. He praised the team for working hard and pushing forward to create the winner.

The Leicester defender had opened the scoring finishing off a well-worked corner to put the home side in front at the half-hour mark. However, Belarus hit back almost immediately as Igor Stasevich saw his shot deflected into the net.

Northern Ireland continued to dominate the game after the equalizer missing several chances before Josh Magennis scored late in the game to hand the home side all three points. The result was well deserved for Northern Ireland in front of their fans on a rainy night at Windsor Park.

Winning goalscorer Josh Magennis also spoke at the end of the game revealing that head coach Michael O’Neil had put confidence in him by bringing him on early on the second half. According to Magennis, the squad is developing well under the tactician.

Northern Ireland still has a long way to go in the qualifiers but are in good condition as they face Estonia and Belarus in the return matches in June. A maximum of points in this game would leave the team in a good position ahead of their games against Netherlands and Germany in September and October.