Northern Ireland 1-1 Romania: Late goal cancels out Liam Boyce opener

Northern Ireland 1-1 Romania: Late goal cancels out Liam Boyce’s opener to deny first Nations League win for Ian Baraclough’s relegated side

  • Liam Boyce put Northern Ireland ahead in the 56th minute from a set-piece 
  • Eric Bicfalvi scored in final 10 minutes for Romania to level the game up 
  • Northern Ireland finished bottom of their Nations League B group 

Northern Ireland were relegated to the third tier of the Nations League before a ball was kicked in Belfast as another disappointing campaign fizzled out.

Liam Boyce’s goal raised their hopes of a first win in this competition at the 10th attempt, but substitute Eric Bicfalvi snatched a late equaliser for Romania at Windsor Park.

UEFA’s decision earlier in the day to award Romania the points from their cancelled game with Norway at the weekend meant that even victory wouldn’t have been enough to lift Northern Ireland off the bottom of the group table.

Northern Ireland drew with Romania 1-1 as they were relegated from Nations League B

Liam Boyce celebrates after putting Northern Ireland ahead from a well-worked set piece

Boyce went close with a header and volley in the first half for Ian Baraclough’s side – who started the game short of three substitutes due to injuries and withdrawals – before scoring in the 56th minute.

The move came straight off the training ground as Paddy McNair played a corner short to Michael Smith who clipped a cross to the far post where Boyce got ahead of Alexandru Cretu to bundle the ball home.

Ian Baraclough’s side were aiming to end their miserable Nations League campaign on a high

Northern Ireland were already relegated from League B ahead of kick-off at Windsor Park 

However, Romania raised their game and Iulian Cristea headed narrowly off target after Bailey Peacock-Farrell misjudged a freekick before the Burnley goalkeeper produced a fantastic fingertip save to deny Marin.

Northern Ireland didn’t heed the warning and conceded an 81st minute equaliser three days after Austria scored two late goals to beat them in Vienna.

Cristian Tanase got through on the left flank and squared the ball for Bicfalvi to score with a side-footed finish that leaves Baraclough still waiting for his first win after eight games in charge.

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