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Release Date: 18/09/2012

The Northern Ireland Under 16 team got their season off to a flying start with a 2-0 victory over Finland at Shamrock Park on Monday night.

The home team pressed from the start and good work down the left by Jonathan Smith and Jordan Thompson created an opening for Andrew Hoey but the striker shot straight at Tomi Mikkelsson.  Soon afterwards the same pair set up Ben Kennedy but his shot was deflected over the bar.

The Finns missed a great chance to break the deadlock after 24 minutes when Oskari Jakonen lobbed the ball wide with Northern Ireland keeper Brett Long stranded off his line.

Viljami Vuorenmas was prominent for the visitors and the sturdy midfielder tested Long with a rasping drive while another fine 30 yard effort dipped just over the bar.

On the stroke of half time Stephen Fallon wasted a great opportunity by shooting into the side net with only the keeper to beat.

After the interval Seanna Foster spurned another chance, shooting weakly at the keeper from 10 yards.  However, on 51 minutes Northern Ireland went in front when Smith accepted a pass from Ben Kennedy and rifled his shot just inside the upright.

With one minute remaining substitute Andrew Mooney doubled the lead when from close range he tapped in a cross from Calvin Kennedy.

The teams meet again at the New Grosvenor Stadium on Wednesday, kick off 5.00 pm.

NORTHERN IRELAND - Brett Long, Seanna Foster, Mark Edgar, Connor Quigley, Callum Byers, Glen Law, Stephen Fallon 
Ben Kennedy,Jonathan Smith, Andrew Hoey, Jordan Thompson. 
Oran Barton Replaced Hoey 71 minutes, Calvin Kennedy Replaced Fallon 64 minutes,
Ben Doherty Replaced Thompson 71 minutes, Andrew Mooney Replaced Smith 71 minutes.

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  • Northern Ireland U16 squad September 2012 - Victory Shield

    Northern Ireland's U16 squad

  • NI U16s in Malta - apr 2012

    The Northern Ireland U16 boys pictured in Malta.

    Picture: Stephen Gatt

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