Sunday 4 December 2016

Northern Ireland's wait for win continues

Published 12/11/2015 | 20:11

Jim Magilton's Northern Ireland Under-21s lost in France
Jim Magilton's Northern Ireland Under-21s lost in France

Enzo Crivelli scored a late winner as Northern Ireland Under-21s were narrowly beaten by their French counterparts in Guingamp.

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Jim Magilton's side remain winless after four Euro 2017 qualifiers, but came within eight minutes of frustrating their high-profile hosts.

Bordeaux forward Crivelli converted a pass from Georges-Kevin N'Koudou to grab the points for Les Bleus, who now have nine points from a possible 12.

Magilton was bolstered by the return of Ryan McLaughlin and Luke McCullough from Michael O'Neill's senior squad, the latter captaining the side.

France were the dominant force in the match, totalling 16 attempts on goal and eight on target, but Conor Brennan did well to keep the score down.

Sebastien Haller, Adrien Rabiot and Corentin Tolisson were all denied by the Kilmarnock stopper, but Northern Ireland's hopes of draw crumbled when substitute Crivelli netted in the 82nd minute.

Rabiot hit the woodwork two minutes from time and Shay McCartan saw his side's only serious attempt saved.

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