Michael O'Neill wants to restore fans' happiness

Michael O'Neill
© PA Photos
Michael O'Neill says that Northern Ireland need to restore the country's feel-good factor by beating Israel.

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill has revealed that he wants his side to put a smile back on the faces of the country after a tough week in Belfast.

As well as enduring a double postponement of their World Cup qualifier with Russia last week, the country suffered mass power cuts as well as damaged transport links due to the snow.

However, their qualifying match with Israel looks likely to go ahead on Tuesday, and O'Neill wants to resurrect the feel-good factor in the country that it witnessed when golfing heroes Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell and Darren Clarke succeed on the international stage.

"This week we've had power cuts and everything else that was going on in the country. There were a lot more severe things going on other than the fact we couldn't get a football match on," O'Neill told the Guardian.

"The weather got the better of us on this occasion. But I always think the players are fully aware and recognise the significance of a positive result.

"We see that with Ulster rugby, we see that with the golfers when they are successful and this is an opportunity for us for a good performance and a good result. If it brightens the nation, then that's a nice side-effect to have."

Northern Ireland host Israel at Windsor Park on Tuesday night.

Related Video
Europa League
5pm
Krasnodar
vs
Wolfsburg
6pm
Rijeka
vs
Feyenoord
6pm
Standard Liege
vs
Sevilla
6pm
Lille
vs
Everton
6pm
Slovan Bratislava
vs
Sparta Prague
6pm
Young Boys
vs
Napoli
6pm
AaB
vs
Dynamo Kiev
6pm
Bucuresti
vs
Rio Ave
6pm
Dinamo Minsk
vs
Guingamp
6pm
PAOK
vs
Fiorentina
6pm
Trabzonspor
vs
Lokeren
8.05pm
Borussia M'bach
vs
Apollon Limassol
8.05pm
Villarreal
vs
FC Zurich
8.05pm
Club Brugge
vs
Copenhagen
8.05pm
Torino
vs
HJK
8.05pm
Partizan
vs
Besiktas
8.05pm
Spurs
vs
Asteras Tripolis
8.05pm
Celtic
vs
Astra
8.05pm
Salzburg
vs
Dinamo Zagreb
8.05pm
Estoril
vs
Dynamo Moscow
8.05pm
PSV
vs
Panathinaikos
8.05pm
Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk
vs
Qarabag FK
8.05pm
Inter Milan
vs
St Etienne
Major League Soccer
Tables