MX23RW : Thursday, July 19 13:43:45

Michael O'Neill not thinking about Northern Ireland future

Michael O'Neill is unwilling to discuss his future as Northern Ireland boss following an aggregate World Cup qualifying playoff defeat to Switzerland.

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill has insisted that any talk about his future can wait until the pain of his side's World Cup heartbreak fades.

The Green and White Army's hopes of qualifying for the tournament were put to an end by Switzerland on Sunday evening, as they were held to a goalless draw in Basel following on from Thursday's controversial first-leg defeat.

O'Neill has been tipped to step aside now that his side's World Cup campaign has come to an end, with a number of Premier League and Championship sides likely to be interested in his services.

Asked after the match whether he intended to quit, however, the 48-year-old told Sky Sports News: "I'm not giving it any thought. I don't think it's a reasonable question to ask me to be fair.

"My focus is with the players in the dressing room. They couldn't have given any more. What they gave for me, what they gave for each other, what they gave for their country was phenomenal."

Northern Ireland, who finished second to world champions Germany in their qualifying group, do not return to action until next March at the earliest.

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Hull City Football Management Consultant Iain Dowie looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City on April 30, 2010
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