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Name Michael O’Neill
Gender Male
Ethnic xxxx
Job ex Northern Ireland Manager


Org Northern Ireland National Team
Club as Coach Stoke City

2017 11 04 Retrieve

[Michael O’Neill speaks ahead of his nation’s two-legged World Cup qualifying play-off against Switzerland] We have a very humble squad. The Northern Ireland team has a great humility about it and players who have played from a young age together. We have a strong team spirit, a really good work ethic. We have some very good players, but our togetherness is our strength

2018 02 10 Retrieve

[Michael O’Neill speaking after signing a four-year contract extension] It would have been wonderful to go to the World Cup, no doubt about that, and this contract will give me the opportunity to have another go at that

2019 12 27 Interview

[Michael O’Neill on the supporters, James McClean, and the relegation situation. Q: How’s the blood pressure Michael?] It was tested today, let’s just say. It was a great way to win a game, you wouldn’t want to be going through that every week. It’s days like today when you look back on the season and maybe say it was a bit of a turning point

I thought we deserved to win the game, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that, but we put ourselves in a difficult position again which is something we have a little bit of a habit of doing. But the character of the players was immense and the atmosphere in the stadium was fantastic as well

[Q: You made two inspired substitutions?] Yeah, you roll the dice at that time. We felt when we put Ty (Campbell) on he was the right option at that time

Lee Gregory had put a huge amount of work in for the team and Ty is a great finisher and he’s shown that this week, particularly in training

Sam Vokes was only passed fit this morning. He missed training yesterday and the day before because of an illness

So great for him because when you come here with the big reputation Sam’s had, and people are expecting you to score goals, and maybe it just hasn’t gone as he’d have liked, every goal’s important and maybe that can build his confidence because he has a lot to offer

The subs, it’s great when they work, but I thought today there was so many positives in the performance. Obviously Ryan (Shawcross) being back. McClean, again, I thought was magnificent. James, really, I had ruled him out after the Middlesbrough game, but James being James came in

Some players at this time of year don’t mind having a niggle, but James made sure he did everything possible to be able to play and he showed that today

Every time he stretched his hamstring I thought we were going to have to take him off, but again he goes the 90 minutes and epitomises all the good characteristics in the dressing room.

[Q: It’s Fulham away next?] Yes. We’ve just played the third in the league and Fulham were in the top six, so it will be difficult and away from home. We have two away games now, can we pick points up? We’ll not be back here until January 11 and if we can add points to what we have now… then we have a massive game here against Millwall

Today was important because without knowing too much about it, clearly over the last couple of seasons maybe the relationship between the team and the fans has not been great and we have to re-build that

There’s a responsibility on us, the players and the staff, because the fans will play a massive part in the remaining 22 games this season and if you can send them away like today, then I know the benefit of that.

It was a very similar situation with Northern Ireland and it took us a long time to win, but when we did and got that atmosphere in the stadium we felt we were capable of beating anyone and that’s something we want to re-create here because they’ve had that here in the past

[Q: You’re now out of the bottom three?] Yes, but I haven’t focused much on the league table. I think it’s good psychologically for the players, but the main thing for me is to get that consistency, confidence and momentum into the team

That nine games we’ve had, we’ve won four, we’ve lost four and drawn one, so that’s relatively decent form in the Championship. But the games we lost, on two or three occasions we could have possibly taken something from them

[Q: Any injuries heading to Fulham?] I’m sure James will be fine. It’s going to take a lot to stop him playing. He crashed into a tackle there at the end as well and still managed to take the corner. Him and Sam Clucas have been our major worries. Sam Clucas has had to be nursed since I came in after injuring his foot in the Barnsley game and he’s still carrying that injury. You saw the incident with the penalty, it was on that injury. They are two very important players for us and we have to make sure they are fit because they’ve contributed an awful lot since I came in

[Q: James gets some hard treatment of away fans?] James is pretty thick skinned, so there’s no concerns about that, and you want people in the trenches with you and he’s certainly one of those you want in the trenches with you