Michelle O’Neill attending first Northern Ireland game at Windsor Park

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First Minister Michelle O’Neill is attending her first Northern Ireland game at Windsor Park.

She is joined by Deputy First Minister Emma Little-Pengelly at the game between the Northern Ireland women’s team and Montenegro.

The Uefa Women’s Nations League play-off match kicks off at 19:00 GMT.

Ms O’Neill committed to attending a Northern Ireland match at Windsor Park after taking up the post of first minister earlier in February.

In 2023, she also showed her support for the Northern Ireland senior men’s team ahead of a crunch game on social media.

On arrival at the game on Tuesday, Ms O’Neill said it was “great to be here this evening”.

“It is going to be a great night,” she added.

“Looking forward to the game, we are all bringing our layers to be wrapped up.

“I think it is important for women in sport that we all get behind them and actually support them.”

Michelle O’Neill is not the first Sinn Féin minister to attend a match at Windsor Park.

In 2011, former Sports Minister Carál Ní Chuilín watched a Euro Qualifier game between Northern Ireland men’s team and the Faroe Islands.

Ms Ni Chuilin described her visit to Windsor Park as a “new experience” and said she had enjoyed the game.

She later tweeted: “First visit to Windsor Park, enjoyed game, well-received.”

Carál Ní Chuilín at Windsor Park in 2011IMAGE SOURCE,PACEMAKER
Image caption,

In 2011, Carál Ní Chuilín watched a Euro qualifier game between Northern Ireland men’s team and the Faroe Islands

The minister took her seat in the stand after the national anthem had been played.

In 2016, then-Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness attended Northern Ireland’s match against Germany during Euro 2016.

Sports minister Gordon Lyons has accompanied Ms O’Neill and Mrs Little-Pengelly to the match.

Junior Ministers Aisling Reilly, of Sinn Féin, and Pam Cameron of the Democratic Unionist Party are also attending.

Newly-elected GAA (Gaelic Athletic Association) President Jarlath Burns previously said he too planned to be at Windsor Park for the game.

Northern Ireland were 2-0 winners in the first leg of the Nations League tie which was played on Friday.

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