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Release Date: 15/10/2012

THE Northern Ireland squad will travel to Porto this afternoon for Tuesday night’s World Cup Qualifier against Portugal at the Dragao Stadium.

The squad arrived in the country on Wednesday for a training camp in Praia de Quiaios and according to Aberdeen’s Niall McGinn the extra few days has helped with the team’s preparations for what is undoubtedly going to be an extremely difficult game.

“Preparation has been really good,” he said. “The manager brought us out to Portugal a few days early and training has been going well.  The boys have been working really hard and we are all looking forward to the game on Tuesday.

“The training camp has given us some time to get away to relax and to work hard ahead of the game.  We’re obviously training most days with our clubs, but getting away like this helps us to bond as a team and allows the manager to get his ideas over to the players and allows us to work together on different things on the training ground.”

McGinn knows that Northern Ireland will be up against it when they take on Cristiano Ronaldo (who is set to win his 100th international cap) and his Portuguese team mates; however he said: “Yes, it’s going to be a tough game, but we have to go out there, work hard and do as well as possible.”

The World Cup Qualifier on Tuesday at the Dragao Stadium kicks-off at 8.45pm.

Northern Ireland squad

Goalkeepers: Roy Carroll (Olympiakos), Alan Mannus (St Johnstone), Michael McGovern (Falkirk)

Defenders: Aaron Hughes (Fulham), Ryan McGivern (Manchester City), Jonny Evans (Manchester United), Craig Cathcart (Blackpool), Lee Hodson (Watford), Daniel Lafferty (Burnley), Rory McArdle (Bradford City).

Midfielders: Chris Baird (Fulham), Steven Davis (Southampton), Oliver Norwood (Huddersfield), Corry Evans (Hull), Niall McGinn (Aberdeen), Pat McCourt (Celtic), Josh Carson (Ipswich).

Forwards: David Healy (Bury), Dean Shiels (Rangers), Kyle Lafferty (FC Sion), Will Grigg (Walsall)


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  • pre Portugal - oct 2012

    Northern Ireland's Niall McGinn pictured during training on Sunday in Portugal.

    Picture: William Cherry / Press Eye

  • pre Portugal - oct 2012

    Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis pictured during Sunday's training session in Portugal.

    Picture: William Cherry / Press Eye

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