Davis upbeat despite defeat
New captain feels Northern Ireland are moving in right direction
By William Esler. Last Updated: February 29, 2012 11:05pm
Steve Davis: New captain feels side moving in right direction
Steve Davis feels Northern Ireland can take a lot of positives Wednesday's clash with Norway, despite the game ending in a 3-0 defeat.
The midfielder was handed the armband by new manager Michael O'Neill and gave a solid performance despite playing most of the game out of position on the right wing.
But the Ballymena man feels that the side are moving in the right direction under O'Neill.
Davis told Sky Sports: "I think so. I think first half we were good. We were unlucky with the goal and a draw at half time probably would have been the right result.
"But second half we made a few changes and lost our shape a little bit, gave away a couple of bad goals, maybe a little bit harsh but we will learn from it.
"It's early days with a new manager, but already we are working hard on our shape in training. First half I thought that was evident, we restricted them and made them play a lot of long balls which we dealt with quite easily."
Dean Shiels made his first Northern Ireland appearance in two years after finding himself out of favour with previous manager Nigel Worthington.
The Kilmarnock forward seized his chance under O'Neill picking up the man of the match award for an impressive display.
And the 27-year-old was delighted to once again get the chance to represent his country.
Shiels said: "On a personally level it was great.
"Obviously the result for the team is the most important thing but it's great to be back in and great to put on the green shirt again and it's a proud moment for me every time I put it on. So I really enjoyed it.
"I think overall there were a lot of positives. Maybe the goals we conceded were poor but we can come away from this game with more positives than negatives."