Jonny Evans

Evans Stars As Northern Ireland Draw With Italy

Jonny Evans played an integral role as Northern Ireland held European champions Italy to a goalless stalemate in FIFA World Cup qualifying on Monday.
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- Several Leicester City players were in international action on Monday
- Jonny Evans starred as Northern Ireland secured a 0-0 draw with Italy in Belfast
- Kasper Schmeichel was in the starting XI as Denmark fell to a 2-0 reverse to Scotland
- Youngsters Wanya Marcal-Madivadua, Ben Nelson and Sammy Braybrooke also featured

The Leicester City centre-back played from start to finish at Windsor Park to help his nation pick up an impressive point against Roberto Mancini's men. Although unable to qualify before kick-off, the Green & White Army delivered a gutsy performance – with Evans at its heart.

Italy arrived in Belfast knowing only a positive result would guarantee qualification for the finals in 2022 and, as the clash developed, Group C rivals Switzerland opened up a lead over Bulgaria, necessitating three points. Northern Ireland, though, held on to secure their ninth point of the campaign.

Leicester-born Ian Baraclough's side finish in third place after sealing two victories and three draws over the eight-game qualification period. Goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, on the other hand, made his 78th appearance for Denmark in a 2-0 defeat by Scotland in Glasgow.

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Kasper Schmeichel
Kasper Schmeichel

Leicester City No.1 Kasper Schmeichel made his 78th appearance for Denmark.

The Danes went into the clash with the Tartan Army after winning all of their previous Group F fixtures, conceding just one goal, to become the first European team to qualify for next winter's showpiece. Schmeichel, meanwhile, made an excellent close-range save to deny Che Adams early on.

However, in the 35th minute, a John Souttar header sent Hampden Park into raptures and Scotland into a one-goal lead, which the hosts doubled late on through Adams. Despite the frustration of losing their 100 per cent record, Denmark end the campaign top of Group F with 27 points.

Earlier in the day, Foxes youngster Wanya Marcal-Madivadua started for Portugal's Under-20s in a 1-1 draw with Germany Under-20s. Mathys Jean-Marie gave the Portuguese a lead early on in the second half, but Tim Lemperle hit back for Germany with four minutes still to play.

Also on Monday, young duo Ben Nelson and Sammy Braybrooke’s England Under-18s enjoyed a 2-0 victory over Portugal Under-18s, with Divin Mubama and Michael Olakigbe among the goals in Spain. Both City players started for the Young Lions, while Braybrooke adorned the captain's armband.

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