Michael makes it all about young guns

Daily Star Sunday - - RESULT! - By DAR­REN FULLERTON

MICHAEL O’NEILL in­sists he will not lose sleep if his evolv­ing North­ern Ire­land side is rel­e­gated to the third tier of the Na­tions League.

Fri­day’s 1-0 de­feat in Aus­tria has left the Green and White Army bot­tom of their group head­ing into to­mor­row’s clash with lead­ers Bos­nia & Herze­gov­ina in Sara­jevo.

But al­though O’Neill (right) is keen to pick up Na­tions League points, his main fo­cus is on de­vel­op­ing his squad ahead of the Euro 2020 qual­i­fiers in March.

Bed­ding in the likes of young­sters Bai­ley Pea­cock­Far­rell, 21, (right) and Ja­mal Lewis, 20, to his start­ing eleven for an­other crack at the Euro fi­nals is more im­por­tant than the here and now.

O’Neill said: “We are us­ing this to pre­pare for next March. If we go through the Na­tions League and we are rel­e­gated, I’m not go­ing to have sleep­less nights. I have to try to de­velop the team and in­tro­duce new play­ers. The only way to do that is to test them against this qual­ity of op­po­si­tion.

“We have young play­ers and this is a tough level to play at.” Bos­nia know a win to­mor­row would al­most guar­an­tee top spot and pro­mo­tion to the Na­tions League top tier for its next edi­tion in 2020. O’Neill is without Will Grigg but hopes Liam Boyce can boost his strik­ing op­tions by re­cov­er­ing from a knee prob­lem.

He said: “Bos­nia are in a very strong po­si­tion. They’ll know if they beat us it’s go­ing to be very dif­fi­cult for them not to win this group. “That’s a nice po­si­tion for them to be in. It’s go­ing to be tough and we’ve got to in­ject fresh­ness.” This recharge­able long life LED spot­light will be all the torch you will ever need with its ex­tra bright beam. The light­weight de­sign is weath­er­proof, has a charg­ing in­di­ca­tor, and in­cludes a 12V car charger and AC/DC adapter. Size: 180 x 150mm.

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