Footballer Caragh Hamilton reflects on NI international journey a year on from Euros debut

The appointment of the next Northern Ireland manager is 'crucial' according to Caragh Hamilton.

26-year-old Hamilton is the latest senior international to make the move to professional football in England.

The forward will make the move from Glentoran to English Championship side Lewes for the 2023/24 season.

She follows in the footsteps of former Glens team mate Lauren Wade who moved to Reading at the same time as goalkeeper Jackie Burns after last summer's Euros.

Northern Ireland took part in their first ever major tournament at Euro 2022 and one year on from their first game they are without a manager.

Kenny Shiels lead the team to and in Southampton but he and the association parted ways earlier this year.

"I feel like we've lost a bit of momentum since the Euros," Hamilton told UTV Sport.

"At national level we would have liked to have had more games and more home games, but from a grass roots and participation point of view we are going well with so many girls having taken up football since the Euros.

"Obviously we would like to have a manager in place for these friendlies with Scotland and Czechia in July but it is important to look at the bigger picture.

"The next appointment is crucial for our development as a senior squad over the next couple of years so it is important to look at the bigger picture and not just appoint someone because they are free now.

"I know the Irish Football Association has been working hard to get it right and I think putting Gail Redmond in charge of the under 19s and under 17s is a great move to for those coming through."

The Northern Ireland senior squad meet up again on Monday before away friendlies against Scotland on Friday 14th July and Czechia on Tuesday 18th July.

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