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Club News

International round-up

5 September 2017

Shane Ferguson and Conor McLaughlin have taken significant steps towards qualifying for the 2018 World Cup with Northern Ireland after claiming six points from six over the latest round of international fixtures.

Northern Ireland followed up a comfortable 3-0 victory in San Marino with a 2-0 win over the Czech Republic at Windsor Park, guaranteeing a top-two finish in Group C.

Conor McLaughlin played the full 90-minutes on Monday night and helped break the deadlock for the hosts in the 28th-minute. McLaughlin, who signed for The Lions in the summer, played in Jonny Evans who beat Czech goalkeeper Tomas Baclik with a backward header.

Millwall winger Shane Ferguson stood firm after coming off the bench to help his side record their seventh clean sheet of the campaign.

The result has likely secured Northern Ireland a World Cup play-off place, which will be filled by the eight best runners-up in the nine qualifying groups.

Meanwhile, Jordan Archer's Scotland kept their qualifying hopes alive with a straightforward win over Malta on Monday night. The Millwall goalkeeper was an unused substitute over the international break after receiving his first call-up to the senior squad a fortnight ago.

The Scots will finish second in Group F should they follow back-to-back wins over Lithuania and Malta with two more.

Scotland host Slovakia next month before travelling to Slovenia with a coveted play-off place at stake.

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