Maciulaitis handed NI youth start

Brian Strain and Nedas Maciulaitis.
Brian Strain and Nedas Maciulaitis.

Nedas Maciulaitis was handed a full debut for Northern Ireland under 17s during last week’s two-match trip to Slovenia.

The Portadown Youth striker was listed on the substitutes’ bench in one fixture but started the other as Northern Ireland took on the host nation.

The friendly dates were staged as part of preparations for the European Championships qualifying campaign.

Maciulaitis made his senior debut last season at Shamrock Park and featured in this summer’s Milk Cup.

“It is great for Nedas and a reward for his hard work,” said Portadown Youth chairman Jeff Kerr. “It is also nice for the club and the area, with Nedas on our books dating back a number of years.”

Maciulaitis’ progress was recognised over Twitter by former title-winning Ports captain Brian Strain, who is currently part of the youth international backroom team.