Stoke hire Northern Ireland boss O'Neill as new manager

2019-11-08 17:24
Michael O'Neill (Getty Images)

London - Championship strugglers Stoke announced Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill as their new manager on a three-and-a-half year contract on Friday.

O'Neill will take charge of Saturday's visit to Barnsley, but will return to lead Northern Ireland's final two Euro 2020 qualifiers against Germany and the Netherlands later this month and potential playoff matches in March.

Northern Ireland could still qualify automatically as they trail both Germany and the Netherlands by three points in Group C with two games to play, but are likely to receive a second chance via a Nations League playoff even if they fail to produce a massive upset in their final two qualifiers.

O'Neill, 50, has impressed in eight years in charge of Northern Ireland, taking them to a first major tournament in 30 years at Euro 2016, where they reached the last 16.

"We reluctantly agreed to allow Stoke to talk to Michael after they met the compensation requirements," Northern Irish FA chief executive Patrick Nelson said in a statement.

"Naturally, we are extremely disappointed that Michael is leaving us.

"However we are delighted all parties have agreed Michael will be in charge of the Northern Ireland team for the games against Holland and Germany and potential Euro 2020 play-off matches in March."

Stoke, relegated from the Premier League in 2018, sacked Nathan Jones a week ago with the Potters rock bottom of the Championship with just eight points from their first 15 games. 


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

After Stuart Baxter stepped down as Bafana Bafana head coach, who would you like to see take over?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.