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Northern Ireland sack coach Ian Baraclough

Ian Baraclough has been sacked as Northern Ireland manager after a dismal Nations League campaign, the Irish Football Association announced on Friday.

Baraclough, who replaced Michael O’Neill in June 2020, had been under pressure after his side collected only five points from a possible 18 in League C.

They narrowly avoided relegation in a campaign in which they had targeted promotion.

Irish FA chief executive Patrick Nelson said: “Under Ian’s stewardship we have seen the introduction of new players who will wear the green jersey with pride for years to come and for this we place on record our gratitude.

“However, in light of the overall record of results on the pitch, the Irish FA board has subsequently taken this decision.”

Northern Ireland fans turned on Baraclough in June, when disappointing draws at home and away to Cyprus came alongside a home defeat to Greece and a loss away to Kosovo.

His final game was a 3-1 defeat to Greece in Athens last month, which left Northern Ireland reliant on Kosovo’s win over Cyprus to avoid relegation to League D.

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