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Last Updated: Wednesday, 13 October, 2004, 20:49 GMT 21:49 UK
Northern Ireland 3-3 Austria
David Healy celebrates his brilliant goal for Northern Ireland against Austria
Northern Ireland snatched a dramatic draw with Stuart Elliott scoring in the fourth minute of stoppage-time.

Skipper Markus Schopp had given Austria an early lead from close range before Northern Ireland levelled with a brilliant volley from David Healy.

A Colin Murdock header had the province in front but Christian Mayrleb fired home an equaliser within 60 seconds.

Mayrleb set up Schopp to restore Austria's lead before Elliott scrambled the ball home to salvage a point.

The game will be remembered for the 35th minute wonder strike from Healy.

The Preston player flicked the ball up with his right foot before beating the stranded Alex Manninger with a looping left-foot shot.

It will rank as one of the best goals ever scored at Windsor Park and was the perfect boost for Northern Ireland who had yet again fallen behind in the early stages.

Stunning equaliser

Austria had unlocked the home defence to take the lead.

Mayrleb played Ivica Vastic through on the right and he squared the ball into the danger area for skipper Schopp to stab in from four yards.

Northern Ireland who had wasted a couple of early chances, were starting to look frustrated when Healy produced his stunning equaliser.

But, lifted by the equaliser, Lawrie Sanchez's men finished the half on a high and things got even better in the second when Murdock headed them ahead.

Damien Johnson swung a corner over from the left in the 60th minute and Murdock squeezed his header in at the back post with the aid of a deflection.

However, Northern Ireland, seeking their first home win for over three years, let the lead slip in a matter of seconds as Austria broke down the right and Mayrleb beat Roy Carroll at the near post with a low shot.

Mayrleb was involved in Austria's third as he took advantage of a Murdock mistake to lay the ball back for Schopp to shoot high into the corner to Carroll's right.

Northern Ireland threw everyone forward in the closing moments, including keeper Carroll at a corner, and it paid off as James Quinn headed down and Hull's Elliott forced in the third equaliser of a dramatic night.


Northern Ireland: Carroll, Aaron Hughes, Williams, Murdock (Elliott 78), Gillespie, Whitley (McVeigh 89), Johnson, Doherty, McCartney, Healy, Quinn. Subs Not Used: Taylor, Craigan, Griffin, Smith, Jones.

Booked: Doherty, Quinn, Johnson.

Goals: Healy 35, Murdock 60, Elliott 90.

Austria: Manninger, Ibertsberger, Feldhofer, Hiden, Pogatetz, Kiesenebner, Schopp (Sick 83), Kuhbauer, Mayrleb (Kollmann 81), Kirchler, Vastic, Sick. Subs Not Used: Macho, Katzer, Dollinger, Ivanschitz.

Booked: Feldhofer, Schopp, Kollmann.

Goals: Schopp 14, Mayrleb 61, Schopp 72.

Att: 20,000.

Ref: Mark Shield (Australia).




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