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Page last updated at 10:59 GMT, Wednesday, 14 October 2009 11:59 UK

Road to SA - Czech Republic

So the dream has gone, all that hope against hope was extinguished when Slovenia beat group leaders Slovakia 2-0 in Bratislava.

The GAWA had hoped for a final match swan-song, in a similar vein to the penultimate game of the previous campaign, when Northern Ireland went to Spain hoping for favours elsewhere and a decent result in Gran Canaria to take them to Euro 2008.

Nigel Worthington's side finished this Group Three campaign with a rugged performance and result which will gave the travelling support something to celebrate.

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NI fans make new Czech mates

A strong turn out for a charity fundraising event saw over 200 NI fans, and a few familiar faces from the world of politics and Windsor Avenue, support a very worthwhile cause.

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NI fan's charity fund-raiser in Prague

A courier delay meant the travelling support had to make the journey to the team's hotel to pick up their mach tickets. Most took the diversion in their stride.

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NI fans collect their tickets in Prague

We caught up with an ex-pat GAWA fan who thinks nothing of jumping on the plane from OZ to watch his beloved NI all over Europe..ye know.

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Prague via Brisbane for Ozzie Owen...ye know

And finally....one NI fan, at least, will still make the trip to South Africa to watch the World Cup Tournament, and has opted to follow a team from South America. We tested his knowledge on his new heroes...

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We're not Brazil we're Paraguay

SOME OF YOUR COMMENTS

"That Jonny Blair gets about a bit... (rafting video) you try living with him for a year and he's like that ALL THE TIME. I was graced with the pleasure of interviewing him for an article too, and some of the things he came out with of his exploits with SOENISC can't be mentioned here! That flag also goes with him EVERYWHERE, he's never seen without it and has got into many adventures with it." Lewis Clarke, Bournemouth.

"I was number 9 hopeful Healy captain (fans match video), great work from the 2 guys from the BBC and they did a great job with the finished article, great job." Alan Burgess, Larne.

"Off to Bratislava on the train. After 2 years of watching most Nor'n Ir'n games as a lone fan in a smokey sports bar in Prague, I can't wait to see Sir David and the boys in the flesh once again." Phil Alexander, Prague.

"I've got my NI shirt and I'll be watching online from the far side of the world. Go-on the boys. Make us proud." Jonathan Scott, New Zealand

" Being a Norn Iron supporter has never been sweeter these last few years! May I again be in Windsor for many more memories..BRING ON THE CZECHS!!! Jay Wallace, Greyabbey.

" Brilliant! I am an Englishman living in the USA. What a great example of how to support your team and Country!! You done yourselves proud! If only the idiot English fans could take your lead!! Graham Sharpe, Miami, USA.

"Our club, Whitehouse NI Supporters Section, have planned away trips to Slovenia and San Marino. The club has been going for 26 years and at its height had 30 members and have seen the highs and lows. Its important to realise that when going to support our wee country you should never expect to win but you do expect a performance . George Lunn.

In the taxi on our way to Las Palmas for the final match of the Euro campaign, the taxi driver phoned his sister to let her hear our chants on the 60 minute drive! His driving had been dodgy enough to begin with...Joel, Belfast.

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see also
Bratislava Pics
24 Sep 08 |  Photo Galleries
Slovenia photos
24 Oct 08 |  Football


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