RANGERS midfielder Steven Davis marked his 114th appearance for Northern Ireland by blowing a penalty-kick opportunity to keep his nation on track for next year’s Euro 2020 Finals.

The Irish had to settle for a goalless draw with Virgil Van Dijk’s Holland in Belfast after the experienced campaigner blundered from the spot in the 29th minute.

The penalty was awarded after Ajax defender Joël Veltman was harshly adjudged to have handled when he got in the way of a close-range shot.

OOPS…Steven Davis fires his spot-kick over the Dutch crossbar.

Davis, 34, stepped up and wildly lashed a wayward effort over the crossbar and then buried his face in his hands as the Dutch celebrated.

It was the best opportunity for either nation during a dour struggle that saw Ronald Koeman’s side join Germany in the Finals.

Manager Michael O’Neill said: “Steven’s a fantastic player and he knows it’s not the best penalty he has hit.”

Davis has been in fine form for Rangers since his permanent return from Southampton this season and is a key man in Steven Gerrard’s line-up.

FINAL SAY…Virgil Van Dijk celebrates with a team-mate as Niall McGinn looks on.


About Author


Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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