McCullough to kick off EURO 2016 preparations

Portadown-born Luke McCullough (left) as part of the Northern Ireland party on the plane to Austria for EURO 2016 preparations. Pic by Pacemaker.
Portadown-born Luke McCullough (left) as part of the Northern Ireland party on the plane to Austria for EURO 2016 preparations. Pic by Pacemaker.

Luke McCullough left Portadown on Monday to begin his landmark EURO 2016 adventure with Northern Ireland.

The Doncaster Rovers player has become the first from Portadown to ever represent Northern Ireland at a major tournament finals.

McCullough was confirmed last weekend in Michael O’Neill’s final 23-strong squad for France.

The versatile defender enjoyed a role at club level this season in midfield and his ability to serve across a number of positions could prove key within the European Championships.

Northern Ireland left Belfast this week for a training camp in Austria and weekend friendly with Slovakia before tackling the tournament.

O’Neill - who was born in Portadown and left the town as a young boy - will use the training camp as part of preparations for the opening competitive fixture on Sunday, June 12 against Poland.

Group games are also scheduled for Thursday, June 16 against Ukraine and on Tuesday, June 21 with Germany.