Carroll and Lafferty rain on Ronaldo's parade
Roy Carroll helped Northern Ireland to a great point in Portugal.
Roy Carroll and Kyle Lafferty helped rain on Ronaldo's and Portugal's parade in Porto as Northern Ireland earned a superb 1-1 draw away to the third ranked team in the world.
Indeed, the Northern Ireland goal was a good old Fermanagh/Tyrone creation as Lafferty's slide rule ball found Niall McGinn and he superbly lifted the ball over Portugal keeper Rui Patricio on the half hour.
Northern Ireland then performed a superb rear guard action with the experienced Roy Carroll a commanding figure displaying great handling in the very wet conditions.
He stopped a number of shots from Ronaldo, Moutinho and Postiga before eventually being beaten by Postiga in the 79th minute.
Northern Ireland then overcame tiring legs and a last ditch salvo from the home team with Carroll again to the fore.
Lafferty worked tirelessly as the lone striker as the Fermanagh duo and a squad that also included Michael McGovern secured a famous point.
Indeed manager Michael O'Neill singled out the performance of Carroll after the game and the work he has put in with goalkeeping coach Tommy Wright.
With four home games to come now, O'Neill, Lafferty, Carroll, Andy Little and Michael McGovern will be hoping that they can help Northern Ireland make a World Cup qualifying impact.
This article appeared in Impartial Reporter 16 Oct 12