Lafferty header sinks Finns
By James Pearson
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Northern Ireland secured a morale-boosting win following a 2-1 victory over Finland.
Northern Ireland secured a morale-boosting victory following a 2-1 friendly win over Finland in Helsinki.
Lawrie Sanchez's side made a positive start to the contest and they took the lead through captain David Healy, on his 50th cap, (pictured) after 34 minutes.
The Leeds United striker pulled away at the back post from a left wing corner and his perfectly guided header floated back across goal into the far post.
The home team turned up the heat after half time and the arrival of Blackburn striker Shefki Kuqi put the visitors on the back foot.
However, Sanchez's side broke clear at the other end and doubled their advantage when Kyle Lafferty guided home Steve Jones' cross in the middle.
Finland did pull one back when substitute Mika Vayrynen superbly curled home from just inside the area, but it proved nothing more than a consolation.
The win on away soil was Northern Ireland's first in over two years and gives the side great confidence ahead of their Euro 2008 qualifier against Iceland next month.
|Finland||Team Statistics||Northern Ireland|
|0||1st Half Goals||1|
|4||Shots on Target||4|
|7||Shots off Target||4|