Nothern Irish national football team gained a truly historical victory over Ukraine. Gareth McAuley and Niall McGinn sealed the first three points for the Green Whites at this competition, leaving them a chance to proceed to the playoffs, as runners-up of Group C.
Ukraine, on the other hand, has now nothing but a tiny chance to struggle for the third place. With the match against Poland up ahead, the Yellow Blues have to show their best - if they haven't already in the game with Germans.
Garreth McAuley (NIR):
Lots of people said we wouldnt get a point here and we've not got three. We werent up to the intensity we wanted to play at against Poland but we were much better in that respect tonight. The goal problably won't sink in for a few days. We produced a great reaction after the Poland game and now we have something to show for it. These fans were with us no matter what. We've got another tough game now against Germany but were delighted and hopefully we'll grow more confident.
Taras Stepanenko (UKR):
It’s clear that it was a do-or-die game today and it seems clear that we’re out of the tournament. The last game is not going to have any special value for the tournament, just for the prestige.
The game was on until the goal went in - whoever scores first, wins. That’s the way it happened, because Northern Ireland had a lot of men back in defence and we knew that they had scored 80% of their goals from set pieces.
We worked on set pieces all week, and now we conceded from one. What can I say? This is going to be a great experience for us, because when every game is so important, we have to be more careful, more focused and make more of an impact on the pitch. Unfortunately we didn’t manage to do that today and if we look at the work rate, it seems that Northern Ireland wanted to win more than we did.