10/02/2009

Healy And Paterson To Lead NI Assault

Top Northern Ireland striker David Healy is looking to continue his goalscoring form in a crucial World Cup qualifier this week in the Italian-speaking country of San Marino.

Team boss Nigel Worthington, who orchestrated a previous 4-0 win over San Marino last October, is expected to select goalscoring sensation David Healy in a formidable two-pronged attack with Martin Paterson up front.

Martin has been on top form this season for Burnley scoring 17 goals while the Sunderland striker Healy continues his top form too bagging two goals in two games for the Premier League side.

Meanwhile, Norwich midfielder Sammy Clingan has been ruled out of Northern Ireland's World Cup qualifier team, because of a thigh strain.
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Clingan pulled out after missing training at the squad's base in Riccoine and will be returning to his club for treatment.

Manager Nigel Worthington said: "It is a disappointment as Sammy is a big player for us. He did not train Sunday and yesterday and had to step out of today's session, so he will be going back."

Although San Marino has yet to record a win in their history, for NI to come away with anything less than victory would be a disaster.

Otherwise the World Cup dream is well and truly dead as Northern Ireland's trip to San Marino needs to net nothing less than three points in Wednesday's return match.

The Principality of San Marino is a country in the Apennine Mountains, completely surrounded by Italy.

Although one of the European microstates, San Marino has the smallest population of all the members of the Council of Europe.

(BMcC/JM)

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