Hampden Park

Next Game

Scotland v N Ireland

Wednesday, 25 March 2015, 19:45

International Match

Last Game

Romania 2 - 0 N Ireland

Friday, 14 November 2014, 19:45

European Qualifiers Group F

Norwood relishing NI duty

Northern Ireland midfielder Oliver Norwood admits he still feels "like a kid" when he reports for international duty.

Last Updated: 29/05/14 at 17:18 Post Comment

Oliver Norwood: Still feels 'like a kid' on international duty

Oliver Norwood: Still feels 'like a kid' on international duty

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Despite being just 23, the Huddersfield player is actually one of the more established figures in a depleted squad that will take on Uruguay on Friday and then Chile on June 4.

He became a regular in Michael O'Neill's first XI during the previous campaign and was eager to continue his development in South America, while the likes of Gareth McAuley, Chris Brunt, Craig Cathcart, Martin Paterson and Jamie Ward opted against making the trip.

Norwood won the battle for Cristiano Ronaldo's shirt when Northern Ireland played Portugal in World Cup qualification and is delighted to be sharing a pitch with more big names in the coming days.

"It is exciting, I'll admit it. I'm still like a kid coming in to the squad and it's great to play against the likes of Edinson Cavani and Diego Forlan," he said.

"They are top-class players and I want to take as much as I can from this tour and put it back into my own career.

"I've never played a South American team and it's an experience I want on my CV. Any time you can put yourself up against top-class opposition can only stand us in good stead for the qualifiers.

"Every game in the campaign will be tough, as we found out last time. There will be no easy games and no right to win any given game.

"Against the bigger nations we are known for performing a lot better so hopefully we can give another good account of ourselves against Uruguay."

There are five uncapped players in Northern Ireland's travelling party - Trevor Carson, Luke McCullough, Liam Donnelly, Ryan McLaughlin and James Gray.

None may have made the cut had O'Neill had a full panel to select from, but Norwood sees their promotion to the senior ranks as a chance to expand the player pool ahead of Euro 2016 qualification in September.

"I've been in the same position as these boys. You have to take your chance when it comes, I'm sure that's what Michael is telling them too," he said.

"If they get a chance in the game they'll need to impress and I hope they do because we haven't got the resources of other countries who can call on 30 or 40 players in a campaign - we're looking at 22-23 realistically.

"Everyone is willing the young lads to come in and impress and they've been welcomed with open arms."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

was there, it was embarrassing - the team looked totally unbalanced from the off, the defence was woeful and when Mikel came off injured it got even worse with nobody in front of them. Up front on several occasions we had opportunities and nobody would shoot - it was a complete farse! On the back of Salah's performance I'm glad there is talk of getting shot...

Fly1ngh1gh
Cup defeat shames Mourinho

G

reat to see Tommy Rosicky getting some love. A wonderful player. Such a pity we lost so long to injury. I was so excited when we signed him, this resurgence only makes the absences seem more of a lost opportunity.

cheshire-gooner
16 Conclusions: FA Cup Fourth Round Weekend

A

pparently Chiles has blamed Twitter trolls for his exit. Proof that even the worst things can get great results at times.

cheshire-gooner
Adrian Chiles to leave ITV

Footer 365

Gary Lineker could host BT Sport's Champions League coverage

Gary Lineker has held talks with BT Sport about presenting their Champions League coverage next season.

Contract news: Robin van Persie unsure if he will be offered new Manchester United deal

Robin van Persie says he has no idea if he will be offered a new contract at Manchester United.

Manchester United U21s beat Liverpool 2-1 as Victor Valdes makes first appearance for the club

Goals from Nick Powell and Paddy McNair gave Manchester United's U21 side victory over Liverpool at Leigh Sports Village.

Mail Box

The Problem With FA Cup Shocks...

...is that the draw for the next round is pretty shocking. Blackburn v Stoke, anybody? We also have mails on LVG and ManUnited, who drew plenty under Fergie...

You're Man Utd, For Crying Out Loud!

Defending a 0-0 draw with Cambridge on the grounds that other teams lost to lower-league opposition is not befitting of Man United. We're inclined to agree with Mailboxers...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company