Little out of Northern Ireland qualifier


Soccer:Northern Ireland utility man Andy Little has been ruled out of tonight’s World Cup qualifier against Luxembourg. The Rangers man, who can play in a variety of positions, was under consideration to start on the right side of midfield at Windsor Park but has instead been sent back to Ibrox with a foot injury.

With only a matter of hours before the 7.45pm kick-off, no replacements have been called up to the squad. Little had a 15-minute cameo from the bench in Friday night’s 2-0 defeat in Russia but was hopeful of being named in the starting team tonight as part of a more attack-minded formation.

The 23-year-old opted not to leave Rangers after they were forced to begin life in the Irn-Bru Third Division and has been rewarded with a regular starting spot for the first time in his Ibrox career.

Little has responded with eight goals in as many games from midfield and spoke on Sunday of his desire to open his international account. His absence raises Corry Evans’ hopes of retaining his place in the side but a more likely outcome would see the fit-again Shane Ferguson return on the left, with Chris Brunt on the right wing.

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