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Northern Ireland earns first win at Euro Championships vs. Ukraine

Ukraine v Northern Ireland - Group C: UEFA Euro 2016

LYON, FRANCE - JUNE 16: Gareth McAuley (L) of Northern Ireland celebrates scoring his team’s first goal with his team mate Conor Washington (R) during the UEFA EURO 2016 Group C match between Ukraine and Northern Ireland at Stade des Lumieres on June 16, 2016 in Lyon, France. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

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With group leaders Poland and Germany set for action later on Thursday, Northern Ireland picked up a big win in Group C.

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Despite being overwhelmed for much of the match by the persistent Ukraine attack, Northern Ireland pulled out a memorable 2-0 win against the 19th-ranked team in the world.

Gareth McAuley’s winner came just four minutes into the second half, after meeting a header inside the penalty area, leaving goalkeeper Andriy Pyatov stranded. The Norn Iron tallied five shots on the afternoon, outdoing Ukraine, who only mustered up three chances of their own.

Northern Ireland sealed their first-ever European Championship win in second-half stoppage time when Niall McGinn tapped in a rebound from close range.

With the victory, Northern Ireland is currently tied with Germany and Poland on three points. Martin O’Neill’s team will close out group play on June 21 against Germany, while Ukraine will search for their first win against Poland.