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Maltese misfortune

Paul O’Neill was named in the starting line-up for Northern Ireland Under-21s’ European Championship qualifier with Malta at Mourneview Park this evening.

Goals from Marcus Grima and Andrea Zammit after home defender Trai Hume was sent off earned victory for Malta on a night that saw Cliftonville striker O’Neill go close on numerous occasions.

After teeing Dale Taylor up for a chance that was blocked, O’Neill was just off target with a header as the 10-men sought a breakthrough before hooking a volley wide in the aftermath of Grima’s eye-catching strike.