‘Words are a fight’ for Simone Magill after tournament-ending injury

Northern Ireland striker Simone Magill says ‘words are a struggle right now’ after her Euro 2022 tournament ended with an ACL injury.

Magill, who only joined Aston Villa last week, is facing a long spell after picking up the injury in Northern Ireland’s 4-1 loss to Norway on Thursday.

The 27-year-old walked out with just over 10 minutes from Northern Ireland’s opener at a major tournament, with scans on Friday confirming her competition was over.

“Words are a struggle right now,” Magill wrote on Twitter.

“Playing in a major tournament has always been the dream. I’m so glad I got here – nothing will ever take that away from me.

“Fans, you were absolutely amazing on Thursday night, you make me so proud and honored to wear the jersey, I had tears in my eyes walking towards the sea of ​​green, it was everything I dreamed of.

“Although it may be a while before I put on a shirt and cross the white line again, I know going out there Thursday night will live with me forever. Thank you for all of your messages.”

Her teammate Demi Vance echoed Magill’s thoughts when she told a press conference in Northern Ireland: “It’s hard to find the words for this.

“There is no good time for this injury to happen and it is unfortunate for Simone, and for us as a team, that it happened at a major tournament.

“We are a big family and we will rally around her, and the next two games will be for her.”

Magill, the first Northern Ireland international to sign a full-time professional contract in women’s football, helped Everton reach two FA Cup finals during a nine-year spell on Merseyside.

She changed clubs in the Women’s Super League after her contract at Everton expired at the end of June.

“Everyone at Aston Villa extends our thoughts to Simone and wishes her the best in her rehabilitation,” Magill’s new club said in a statement on Friday.

Northern Ireland’s next opponent is Austria, who also lost their tournament opener to hosts England.

Vance agrees a win is vital for both teams if they are to keep their Group A hopes alive, but he’s confident the Irish will look better than they did against the Norway.

Northern Ireland defender Demi Vance (Liam McBurney/PA) (PA Archive)

The defender said: “It’s a different game to Norway and we’ll learn from our mistakes.

“But we will play with the same mentality, we will play at high risk. That’s how we play, and we know every game is a must win for us and that’s what we’re going to try to do.

“Norway was our very first game in a major tournament, so I think in the first 15-20 minutes it’s normal that we are nervous and nervous.

“But we’ve knocked that out of our system now and in the second half against Norway we showed that’s the kind of football we can play and we kept it going. So I think against Austria we we will be ready from the start.

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