Northern Ireland manager Ian Baraclough says his side’s dramatic Euro play-off semi-final penalty shootout success was the result of a well executed gameplan.
Late substitutes Liam Boyce and Conor Washington both scored spot-kicks as NI progressed 4-3 on penalties after the match had ended 1-1 after extra-time.
“It [penalties] is something we spoke about and worked on,” said Northern Ireland manager Ian Baraclough.
“Who are the best penalty takers and who are the most confident stepping up. We had a gameplan in place.”
The introduction of the two NI strikers in the 120th minute at the expense of Jordan Thompson and Jordan Jones, who had also come off the bench, represented a bold move from Baraclough but one that paid rich dividends.
“We were desperate for the ball to go out of play to get Boycie and Conor on the pitch,” explained the NI boss.
“The two lads that had come on as subs earlier were selfless. We knew they weren’t as strong penalty takers.”
“Our planning had involved going away and practicing your penalty, put it in the place you want to put it and don’t change your mind.”
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