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Steven Davis deserves comparison with Cristiano Ronaldo, says Ireland boss Michael O’Neill

Michael O’Neill believes Northern Ireland star Steven Davis deserves Cristiano Ronaldo comparison ahead of breaking outfield caps record

  • Steven Davis will become Northern Ireland’s most capped outfield player 
  • The 34-year-old will overtake Aaron Hughes’ record of 112 appearances 
  • Boss O’Neill believes Davis should be spoken about in same breath as Ronaldo
  • But Davis admitted he was focused on the upcoming Euro clash with Germany 
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Steven Davis has been compared to Cristiano Ronaldo as he prepares to become Northern Ireland’s most capped outfield player of all time.

Davis will move ahead of Aaron Hughes on 113 appearances when he captains his country in Monday’s Euro 2020 Group C qualifier at Windsor Park, and just six caps shy of goalkeeper Pat Jennings’s record.

Manager Michael O’Neill paid tribute to Davis’s commitment, likening the 34-year-old Rangers midfielder to superstar Ronaldo who played and scored for Portugal against Serbia at the weekend.

Steven Davis deserves comparison with Cristiano Ronaldo, says Ireland boss Michael O’Neill

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Steven Davis deserves comparison with Cristiano Ronaldo, says Ireland boss Michael O’Neill

O’Neill paid tribute to Davis’ commitment and likened the 34-year-old to superstar Ronaldo

O’Neill paid tribute to Davis’ commitment and likened the 34-year-old to superstar Ronaldo

O’Neill paid tribute to Davis’ commitment and likened the 34-year-old to superstar Ronaldo

‘I think it’s a great achievement,’ said O’Neill. ‘Whenever he does hang up his boots, which hopefully will be after I’ve left this job, he will rightly be remembered as one of the greatest players we’ve ever had.

‘Last night I was watching Cristiano Ronaldo play at 34 years of age for his country and what it means to him, and that’s why international football is so special. Steven deserves to be talked about in that breath because I believe he will go on and break Pat Jennings’ record.’ 

Northern Ireland are top of the group and O’Neill believes Germany are more beatable now than when the two teams met in qualifying for the last World Cup.

The Germans, humbled 4-2 at home by Holland on Friday, suffered another setback on Sunday when Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan dropped out with flu.

But Davis is fully focused on Northern Ireland's double header against Germany and Holland
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But Davis is fully focused on Northern Ireland's double header against Germany and Holland

But Davis is fully focused on Northern Ireland’s double header against Germany and Holland