Talk:Northern Ireland national football team

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I believe this ranking should be removed from the page altogether until ELO fix their ranking system because all matches prior to partition have been given over to the Republic side in their system, therefore both countrys ranking must be wrong --Ifcp1 19:39, 25 September 2007 (UTC)

The ELO tends only to need the last 30 games for an accurate calculations, so alhough it was wrong in 1920s, it should have fixed itself by now. It is not just NI's ranking that will be miscalculated, but any team that has ever played them in the last 90 years, as the points gained to calculate an ELO rating are partially based on the number of points the opposition has. It would only really be significant for the 1920 and early 1930s. If another team has their peak position in this era then the miscalculation in the NI could mean this is wrong, I would suggest you refer the matter to Wikipedia:WikiProject_Football Fasach Nua 13:52, 16 November 2007 (UTC)

Talk:Northern Ireland national football team[edit]

The following discussion is an archived debate of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the debate was move. —Nightstallion (?) 09:51, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

Northern Ireland national soccer team → Northern Ireland national football team – Page moved when no clear consensus to do so.
This page was moved by User:Lapsed Pacifist when their was no clear consensus to do so. You can see what discussion did occur below in the move section. In summary the Category:European national football teams uses the term “football” rather than “soccer” in all except the Northern Ireland article. I believe, fundementally and with regret, that this is simply another pov whim of Lapsed Pacifist. Djegan 22:37, 4 February 2006 (UTC)


Add *Support or *Oppose, then sign your vote with ~~~~
  • Support as above. Djegan 22:37, 4 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support agree with above, as some one who is a fan of both footballs played in ireland, on both side of the division, i find the move to the current soccer name to be nothing but the "ultra nationalist" pov of one user. Also considering that the term football has no exculsive use for either version, GAA or Regular. --Boothy443 | trácht ar 22:46, 4 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I also moved the Republic's page, so this move was not exceptional. With the exception of rugby (which is usuallly called just that), Ireland is probably unique in Europe in having another sport called football which is not soccer. If there are others, I doubt they are as popular in their countries as Gaelic football is in Ireland. I don't understand how moving to avoid ambiguity could be construed as "ultra-nationalist", unless one was looking ultra-hard. I've never heard of "Regular" football, although I doubt it means the same thing to Americans as it does to Boothy443. I certainly don't intend exclusive use of the term football to denote Gaelic football in Irish articles, as Boothy implies. Lapsed Pacifist 23:59, 4 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support. "Country_name national football team" is the Wikipedia standard for international football team articles (see Category:National football (soccer) teams). There is no ambiguity with Gaelic football, because neither the Republic nor NI has its own GAA football team, and the island of Ireland has no soccer team. Demiurge 00:05, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support as above (no Gaa national teams, all other countries are referred to as football) MartinRe 00:40, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Comment. Re: "There is no ambiguity with Gaelic football, because neither the Republic nor NI has its own GAA football team, and the island of Ireland has no soccer team." Everyone here probably already knew that. Not every visitor to this page will. Lapsed Pacifist 00:46, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
    • Those same people will probabily never of heard of the GAA or Gaelic Football anyway so its no ones loss; notwithstanding your argument is a straw man one anyway. WP:POINT. Djegan 00:57, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • I don't agree about the loss. I don't understand what you mean by straw man. Lapsed Pacifist 01:01, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
    • It means you're caricaturing the opposing argument so you can knock it down more easily. See straw man. --Kwekubo 00:21, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support as per Demiurge and others --Angelo 01:07, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support, follow standards. -- Elisson Talk 01:31, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Comment. The frequent reference to the standards applied to other countries do not take into account Ireland's uniqueness in this regard, on which I wrote above. Lapsed Pacifist 08:29, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
    • Comment Is this "uniqueness" the same thing that gets you involved in constant revert wars with editors, inserting your own pov terms against consensus; in particular "Six Counties" for Northern Ireland". When you do that sort of thing of course you become a target for reverting, and the few sensible suggestions (not that your move was) are not seen in good faith. Djegan 12:30, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Comment. No, this uniqueness is unique. Sensible suggestions should be judged on their merits, not opposed because of petty office politics. Lapsed Pacifist 14:30, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support. Julien Tuerlinckx 11:33, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support, just. Football appears to be the most common name of the sport in Northern Irish media. See Belfast Telegraph, News Letter. Irish News uses soccer, though. Sam Vimes 13:42, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support as per Demiurge Oldelpaso 14:14, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support As there is no Northern Ireland gaelic football team there is no need to disambigulate the term.FearÉIREANNMap of Ireland's capitals.png\(caint) 16:01, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Comment. Concentrate on what is being discussed. No-one has suggested a disambiguation page. Lapsed Pacifist 16:13, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support. "Country_name national football team" is the Wikipedia standard for all international football (soccer) teams except the US mens' team. -- Arwel (talk) 16:25, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support as per reasons listed above - Master Of Ninja 17:37, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support CTOAGN (talk) 18:48, 5 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support. If you aren't happy with the use of 'football' in the title, then that's an issue for the Wikipedia-wide style guide, not your own whim. --Kwekubo 00:14, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support. Convention supercedes any "ambiguity" argument. (Plus - "ambiguity" argument is weak anyway, as little chance of confusion with "national gealic football team" - given none exist) Guliolopez 10:13, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support as per Demiurge and others. Stu 10:21, 6 February 2006 (UTC)
  • Support. Benfranklinlover 02:44, 8 September 2006 (UTC)


Add any additional comments
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

First game as "Northern Ireland"[edit]

Recently, an anonymous user has been removing that information from the infobox on this page. While it is possible that "they continued to pick from all of Ireland until the 1950s and called themselves simply 'Ireland' for even longer after that", as the user suggests, as far as FIFA is concerned, Nothern Ireland exists as "Northern Ireland" since 1921. That's when Northern Ireland was formed. And the first paragraph of this article explains the history.

The point of Wikipedia is to provide information. If someone is to ask, "when is the first game played by Northern Ireland?", there is no right answer to that. Do they mean, "by Northern Ireland as Northern Ireland" or "by the team representing the Irish Football Association"? That's why both dates are given; both are important matches in the team's history. For similiar situations, see Israel national football team and China national football team. --Dryazan 17:46, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Well, that's the point. When they played in 1921 they weren't known as Northern Ireland. Yes, there was now a political entity called Northern Ireland following the rest of Ireland leaving the UK, but as far as everyone was concerned, the team still represented all of Ireland and as such was still known as 'Ireland' (as the rugby union team still is today). It wasn't until 1926 that what is now known as the Republic of Ireland team first played, but they too first called themselves 'Ireland' (they were run by the Football Association of Ireland who were set up as a direct rival to the Irish Football Association). Net result: both teams claimed to represent all of Ireland. It was not until 1946 that the boundaries were sorted out and the older team was designated as representing Northern Ireland and the younger the Republic of Ireland. It then took until 1950 for the rules to be changed, making it that only Northern Irish players could play for Northern Ireland and that only Irish Republic players could play for the Republic of Ireland.
So basically, the issue is not as clear-cut as you make out. I agree entirely that when writing about these things historically we should assume that Ireland became Northern Ireland in 1921 and the Republic of Ireland team started in 1926. However, it is misleading to put the 1921 game as a historic event because it wasn't. As far as everyone was concerned, it was just another game for Ireland. - 16:42, 30 May 2005 (UTC)
Maybe we should add the 1946 and/or 1950 games then, with proper explanation in the body of the article. --Dryazan 01:39, 15 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Recently shown on BBC's Best Night, they said Northern Ireland was known by FIFA as Ireland in 1967, the match coverage and programmes from the game advertise it as Ireland v Scotland.

Acording to "the 125 year history of the IFA", published by the IFA, the team started out as Ireland, then became Ireland(IFA), and Ireland (FAI) after partition, and FIFA ordered the 2 teams to change their names in June 1954. Although I do recall seeing match programmes produced much more recently with both NI & ROI being referred to as IrelandFasach Nua 19:42, 14 February 2006 (UTC)
The FAI's official online history dates the intervention by FIFA to 1953, but has more or less the same facts. No mention of 'Ireland (IFA)' and 'Ireland (FAI)' as disambiguation terms though. [1] --Kwekubo 20:31, 14 February 2006 (UTC)

Green uniforms[edit]

I'm surprised the team wears green uniforms. Is this controversial? I thought green was strongly identified as a Catholic/Nationalist color. Funnyhat 08:44, 28 Apr 2005 (UTC)

That's true, but green is also the traditional colour of Ireland. Since the Northern Irish football team originally represented all of Ireland (as all of Ireland was part of the UK back then), green was the natural choice of colour. - 16:42, 30 May 2005 (UTC)
Ah, that makes sense. To switch away from green when it had been established would have definitely been contentious. Funnyhat 03:20, 31 May 2005 (UTC)
Rather bizzarly, the colour changed from blue to green after partition in 1931!
Of the political entity yes, but not the football team. What were the FAI colours at the time? Timrollpickering 00:33, 25 April 2006 (UTC)

The colours are wrong for the uniform. The NI kit has recently changed, the page should reflect that change. TheWickerMan 15:18, 2 September 2006 (UTC)

Selection criteria[edit]

This edit seems baseless. From this offical history at the FAI website:

1950 was also the year that the problem of players playing for both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland was finally solved, with FIFA directing both Associations to only pick players from within their own boundaries. FIFA were also to clear up another matter in 1953, when they ruled that the FAI's team would be known as the Republic of Ireland with the IFA's side being called Northern Ireland. Up to that point, both Associations referred to their teams as 'Ireland.'

--Kwekubo 04:57, 29 December 2005 (UTC)

The FAI doesn't even limit itself to Ireland when choosing players, let alone just the Republic. I distinctly recall a player being booed as a "Fenian traitor" (i.e. he came from the northeast but had "betrayed" the six counties by playing for the Republic) by a section of fans during an inter-Ireland game only a few years ago, although I can't remember his name right now.
Lapsed Pacifist 05:24, 29 December 2005 (UTC)
The FAI cannot select parents who are not from the Republic of Ireland - FIFA rules will not allow it. They can, however, exploit the rules that allow for people to qualify for the a country if their grandparents (for example) were born there. - Green Tentacle 22:31, 14 January 2006 (UTC)
The IFA is allowed to select players from the whole of Ireland for the home internationals, (something which it has never done since 1950), I suspect that is because they were not technically competitiuve matchs, anyone know for sure? Fasach Nua 19:59, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

How do FIFA rules handle issues like partition and boundary changes? If one's grandparents lived pre partition would the counties they were born in determine which team one could play in or would they be eligible for either? Timrollpickering 00:33, 3 April 2006 (UTC)

I think you are partially right, if your grandparents were born pre-partition, then you are eligiable for both of the new(sic) associtaions. If memory serves the IFA uses parents and FAI uses grandparents for their qualification criterian, hence the FAI tends to have more players across the island than the IFA. I dont think it's quite as simple as that there are passport rules, and other funny anomolies too. Fasach Nua 21:33, 3 April 2006 (UTC)
Hmm - could the IFA change its rules to include grandparents and embark on a "Find All Irishmen" type search to boost the Northern Ireland side's fortunes? Timrollpickering 21:37, 3 April 2006 (UTC)
There was talk of doing this in the 1990s during the republic's teams hay day. I think the IFA wanted to keep the team a local team with local players, rather than have the influx of players with questionable Irish connections as the Republic had. As partition disappears further into the past, there are progressively fewer and fewer people under the age of 35 whoes grandparents were born prepartion, and so maybe the argument is gradually becoming less relevant. 20:02, 7 April 2006 (UTC)
The current FIFA rules on this are quite clear. A person can only play for a country of which they are a citizen (citizenship laws do, of course, vary between countries and certain players exploit this). People with dual citizenship can play for either country. There are a lot of people with dual British and Irish citizenship, hence the Find Any Irishmen campaigns of the past. Once a player has played for one country at senior level, they cannot play for another (even if they renounce their citizenship and become a citizen of somewhere else).
As a side-note, the rule is complicated with regards to the UK (but not the Republic of Ireland) as the UK has four teams, but only one nationality (British). The rule here (bashed out by the Home Nations' football associations) is that a player can play for whichever Home Nation they were born in, their parents were born in or their grandparents were born in. If someone qualifies for nore than one Home Nation (say they were born in England, but their mother was born in Wales), then they can pick. Players born in Crown Dependencies (such as the Channel Islands) can also pick which Home Nation to play for. - Green Tentacle 00:49, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

What is the correct name of the UK's Olympic team?[edit]

Is the UK's Olympic team "Great Britain" or "Great Britain and Northern Ireland"?

see Cfd discussion: Wikipedia:Categories_for_deletion#Category:Great_Britain_at_the_Olympics_to_Category:Great_Britain_and_Northern_Ireland_at_the_Olympics --Mais oui! 22:12, 17 January 2006 (UTC)


I propose to move this page to Northern Ireland soccer team. There is more than one type of football played in the region, and the use of the word "national" is contentious.

Lapsed Pacifist 14:49, 22 January 2006 (UTC)

All of the teams under Category:European national football teams are in the style "country national football team" so this maybe worth baring in mind. Djegan 19:29, 22 January 2006 (UTC)
Furthermore the term "nation" (as the root of "national") is not by any means the same as "state". Many teams in the category are not states, but nonetheless have a national football team. Djegan 19:36, 22 January 2006 (UTC)
Agree with Djegan, also considering that the org that supports the team is also know as Irish Fotball Assn. --Boothy443 | trácht ar 02:39, 23 January 2006 (UTC)

"Football" bothers me more than "national". Even the Northern Ireland Office acknowledges that the GAA is the biggest sporting organisation in the region. To write "football" as if there was only one kind being played is insulting.

Lapsed Pacifist 16:47, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

I do not keep up on what the GAA do, but my understanding is that they do not field any national teams in any of their games and matches? Theirfore "national football team" could not be applied to them in any valid way as we are not comparing like-to-like — if it was county or provincial then that would be a different matter. Djegan 16:56, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

Yes they do. Ireland play Australia every year in the compromise rules code.

Lapsed Pacifist 21:02, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

But this article is about Northern Ireland not Ireland or Australia. Djegan 21:11, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

Soccer is an unambiguous word. Football is not. I can't understand why this is contentious.

Lapsed Pacifist 21:25, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

Because it is a straw man arguement. Djegan 21:28, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

You've lost me.

Lapsed Pacifist 21:30, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

You still have to make any substantial points that would prove their is a case for ambiguity, if you dont know the difference between Ireland and Northern Ireland then you have not lost me - your simply warring. Djegan 21:34, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

Of course I know the difference between the north of a country and the whole of it. You thought the GAA did not operate at international level, and I increased the sum of your knowledge. Go to the football article, and see why the term is ambiguous. You and I know the six counties don't have a team for any other kind of football. But other users may not. What I don't understand is why you don't like the word soccer.

Lapsed Pacifist 21:52, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

So, as you have shown, their is still no substantial requirement for moving the article, it is clearly understood what is meant when the terms “Northern Ireland national” and “football team” are used togetheir; it can only mean one thing, theirfore it follows that it is not ambiguous. As for introducing soccer that just introduces an additional and unneccessary word; that it the test. Djegan 22:05, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

See United States men's national soccer team for an example. The USA does not field an international American Football team as far as I know. In the USA there is a form of football that is way more dominant than soccer. Many people in the USA refer to football (FA rules) as 'soccer.' All of these characteristics apply to Northern Ireland. If you're going to insist on the NI team's page having 'football' in the title then you'll have to do the same for Uncle Sam. --Eamonnca1 16:57, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

You're about as clear as granite, DJ.

Lapsed Pacifist 22:14, 4 February 2006 (UTC)

Current campaign[edit]

Why a current campaign section? Is Wikipedia a fixture list now? Stu ’Bout ye! 08:04, 21 April 2006 (UTC)


Is NI the smallest country to qualify for the world cup? The population of T&T is given as 1,305,000 in the wikipedia, anyone know the NI population in 1958? Fasach Nua 23:50, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

They were the smallest country to quality until T&T, as stated in the article. Stu ’Bout ye! 07:59, 20 June 2006 (UTC)

Away jerseys[edit]

The shop at the IFA website has for sale both an "Away Short Sleeved Jersey" (white with green trim) and an "NI Away Short Sleeved Jersey" (blue with white trim). I cannot say that I have ever seen NI playing in a blue jersey; which of the two is the current away top? Or is the situation similar to, for example, Ghana, who used yellow home and white away jerseys until this year's world cup when FIFA decided the colours were too similar? --Kwekubo 16:35, 24 June 2006 (UTC)

Strangely I was in JJB in Ballymena yesterday and noticed the blue Northern Ireland tops. I believe, as Fasach Nua said on the edit summary, it is supposed to be Saint Patrick's blue. No idea if the change had anything to do with FIFA.  <font="center" color="#FFFFFF"> theKeith  Talk!  17:30, 24 June 2006 (UTC)
In the qualification for the 1994 world cup, NI had a Blue away strip, which they wore once(?) when playing away to some other team in dublin. It was criticised for looking like a butcher's apron and the IFA vowed never to use anything other than white for an away strip again Fasach Nua 02:24, 25 June 2006 (UTC)
The old (2006 campaign) away kit was white with green trim, the new (2008 Euro) away kit is blue. No idea why the colours changed, but there's always been some blue on the NI kit, as distinct from the ROI kit


The original home strip used o be blue, maybe that has something to do with it? --Fasach Nua 20:57, 7 July 2006 (UTC)
To clarify this matter - the blue kit was the designated away strip when Northern Ireland started in the Euro 2008 qualifiers, and was worn in the away fixture in Denmark. A new white away kit (currently presented as the away kit in the article) was introduced in mid-2007, and was used in the final qualifying match in Spain. Jonzi9 (talk) 17:05, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

Where has the all blue "third kit" come from? I have never seen the team wear it or anything similar. Also, the new "away kit" is white and navy, not white and black - I'd change it but don't know how. Nifg (talk) 10:05, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

I've changed the away kit colours to navy and white rather than black and white as per this link Also, could somebody provide a link to where the all blue third shirt as I have never seen it anywhere so have removed it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Nifg (talkcontribs) 17:41, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Northern Ireland "national" football (sic) team[edit]

Impossible. Ask, for example, the following unionist organisations: The Church of Ireland; The Presbyterian Church in Ireland; The Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland.... This latest attempt to give historic legitimacy to the last remnant of the British Empire in Ireland is just as futile as the rest of them. One siege- indeed centuries of sieges- does not make a nation. El Gringo 18:34, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

This is the standard naming format on Wikipedia for all teams fielded by member associations of FIFA. -- Arwel (talk) 23:11, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
The government seems to think otherwise, Gringo. Consider the following non-unionist organisations and/or establishments: the Police Service of Northern Ireland, Northern Ireland Assembly, Northern Ireland Tourist Board... Northern Ireland is a constituent country; see the article of the same name. -- the GREAT Gavini 15:43, 7 September 2006 (UTC)

Ireland national football team (1882-1920)[edit]

There has been an article with the above title created, which is very relevant to this article, on the off chance someone missed it's creation 08:54, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

Controversey and Sectarianism[edit]

I've removed a bit of text from this section that says that NI fans are sectarian because they support Rangers. Firstly, I'd have thought that NI fans would be more inclined to support local soccer teams. Second, the definition of 'sectarian' is not 'he who supports Rangers.' I've tightened up some of the English in there as well. --Eamonnca1 02:06, 5 January 2007 (UTC)


A perennial point of controversy at Talk:Northern Ireland has been the use of the Ulster Banner to represent NI. There was a fairly interesting discussion recently at Talk:Celtic F.C. which relates to this and I think the matter is settled for now at keeping the use (per UEFA) of the flag to represent the NI team. I thought it possible that some reading here might be interested in the discussion we have had. --Guinnog 18:25, 17 January 2007 (UTC)

And per FIFA too it seems, see [2] --Guinnog 18:33, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

When did the Ulster Banner first get used to represent the IFA team? If they were "Ireland" till 1950, what flag did they use before then? Perhaps the home nations didn't use flags or anthems at their matches in the way they do in rugby. In which case, the first use of the flag was probably 1957-01-16 in Lisbon against Portugal in 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification#UEFA Group 8. And on a related note, has God Save the Queen been played before every match, and/or has any other anthem ever been used? jnestorius(talk) 20:04, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

I think that the IrelandC32 flag would have been Saint Patrick's Flag (as used in this article), between partition and 1950 the IrelandC6 team would possibly have used it also. It should be noted that the Government of Northern Ireland was granted arms in 1924, and from then a banner of arms could have been used. Anthem wise I don't have a clue! I can't really think of any UKoGBaI Irish anthem. My guess would be that GSTQ has been used by the IFA for all Internationals. « Keith t·e » 20:26, 14 April 2007 (UTC)
I wouldnt be sure any flag was used at the early stage, the usage of flags/anthems is part of a FIFA directive, Im not sure the home championships were ever externally regulated, (domestic football generally doesnt use anthems) even if the directive had been enforced at that time. The IFA are in the process of gathering old photographs from IRL/NI international games for publication, which may shed some light on this issue! On an aside, when did "Northern Ireland" get incorporated into the badge? 21:31, 14 April 2007 (UTC)
I think there was trouble at a Dublin IFA international c.1913 which related to nationalists wanting to fly the tricolour instead of the union jack. jnestorius(talk) 22:10, 14 April 2007 (UTC)

Northern Ireland Portal selected article[edit]

Considering the team has done quite well in Europe thus far, this might be an opportune time to recruit support for improving the article, and including it (after improvements) in the Northern Ireland Portal. --Mal 02:45, 15 April 2007 (UTC)

Auto peer review: for help in the current football collaboration[edit]

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Lawrie Sanchez is gone![edit]

I just heard on the news this morning that Lawrie Sanchez has resigned as manager! Edits to the page will have to be made. Leemorrison 13:09, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Northern Ireland fans lending support to Republic of Ireland team[edit]

I removed the link, ie this, which was used to prove the following statement:

"It is not unknown for Northern Ireland supporters to adopt the Republic of Ireland as their second team when they are not in direct competition"

The above link does not back this up in any way at all, the only slight mention is of some Northern fans giving sympathy to the Republic fans after the 2002 world cup. This does not imply adopting the Republic of Ireland as their second team.

Thus i have removed the link and placed a citation tag. Mabuska 18:38, 15 May 2007 (UTC)


The flag used for the team pre 1954, in my opinion braches the manual of style. The flag depicted is one of many flags associated with Ireland, the only flag flown at Ireland internationals was the Union flag (as they played in the Home nations), and choosing one flag over the rest is WP:OR. I have removed all the flags, on the historic results section. Fasach Nua 15:48, 14 November 2007 (UTC)

Northern Ireland national football team - record in major tournaments[edit]

I've copied the current campaign stuff here, maybe something along the lines of Republic of Ireland national football team - record in major tournaments. Fasach Nua (talk) 10:40, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

Ireland national football team (IFA)[edit]

I have moved the discussion of the Ireland national football team (IFA) from here to Talk:Ireland national football team (IFA)#This Article. It relates more closely to that article than this one, and I want to avoid the danger of duplicating or splitting the discussion across two pages. The issue is of interest to anyone interested in this article, as it asks:

  • should there be a separate article? if so:
    • does it need to be more explicit about its terms of reference?
    • what information in this article should be moved to that one?

All comments encouraged on that Talk: page. jnestorius(talk) 20:08, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

NIR Matches since 2000[edit]

Why not have a hyperlink about the NIR Matches since 2000 because if you luck at David Healy's Carrer and missed matches it is all the matches that NIR have played since 2000. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:10, 22 December 2007 (UTC)

Im not keen on having this section, there is a seperate article (under construction) on major tournaments. I think nothing more than the current campaign can be justified, and even then I would say that would be excessive! Fasach Nua (talk) 18:33, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

Straw Polls on "Association" being added to UK and Irish football articles[edit]

There is a straw poll at Talk:Association football in Northern Ireland on whether the word "Association" should be in "Association Football in Northern Ireland". --Matt Lewis (talk) 17:08, 29 May 2008 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:Northern ireland national football team logo.png[edit]

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ROI/Ireland in history section[edit]

Regarding the edit by User:Kevin_McE, I take your point on IFS. But the earlier line is specfically providing the name of the state in question and it's misleading & wrong to say its ROI as it did not later become the Republic of Ireland, however that label is put on the state in cases of ambiguity. Also menioning the correct name of the state is important inorder to put in context the name issue regarding the two football teams. ROI use throughout the article is fine, but in this circumstance is incorrect.Comments?SitNGo (talk) 19:35, 24 September 2008 (UTC)

I wouldn't want to pursue it too long or loud, but would simply suggest that, for the sake of clarity, that which avoids ambiguity might be more useful than an insistence on legally prescribed titles. Kevin McE (talk) 20:18, 24 September 2008 (UTC)
I have no issue with trying to remove amiguity, but this sentence does specifically aim to provide the names of the state. In 1922, Southern Ireland gained independence as the Irish Free State, later to become Republic of Ireland. is currently an inaccurate sentence as that did not occur. I like to go for accurate sentences how about In 1922, Southern Ireland gained independence as the Irish Free State, later to become a republic under the name of Ireland. Is that clear enough to the reader?SitNGo (talk) 20:36, 24 September 2008 (UTC)
It was given the description Republic of Ireland when it became a republic in 1949. Mooretwin (talk) 20:47, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

The United Kingdom is also describe as a Republic and so is France , and Tiawan to name but a few yet they get called their offical names why doesnt Ireland ? It is recognised as such by the EU and UN . — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:50, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

That might come as a surprise to her Maj Kevin McE (talk) 19:05, 31 August 2011 (UTC)

Eligibility rules[edit]

The current description of the rules are unclear, and, I fear, inaccurate. A non-UK born holder of a UK passport is equally eligible for any of the four home nations teams (thus Maik Taylor for NI, Pat van den Hauwe for Wales etc), but this seems to be overlooked in the current analysis. Kevin McE (talk) 23:15, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

Northern Irish Catholics[edit]

The article doesn't make it entirely clear weather Northern Irish catholics support this team or the Republic of Ireland team. Could anyone find an answer to this - and if neccesary add to the article. ps: thanks must go out to the user who censored this question (twice now!) when I last asked it! WP is not a forum does not apply here because I am clearly discussing something that would be useful if added to the article. (talk) 23:09, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

The religion of the people of the land that the Northern Ireland football team represent is not notable or relevant to the text of this article. Case closed.MusicInTheHouse (talk) 23:12, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
Mate - I was only asking! Seriously - get some sleep or take a cold shower and relax! (talk) 04:17, 2 April 2009 (UTC)
Yeah you say that after posting this on my talk page. Hmmm.MusicInTheHouse (talk) 21:12, 2 April 2009 (UTC)

Changing the opening paragraph[edit]

Fasach Nua, please stop making controversial changes to the opening paragraph without first gaining a consensus for the changes as per WP:BRD. You've changed the opening para several times now, all without reference and citations to back up your claims. Please stop this disruptive behavior. --HighKing (talk) 09:48, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

You need to clarify which part is conterversial, the Republic of ireland act or the 1953 FIFA ruling, as you have reverted both Fasach Nua (talk) 09:56, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
(edit conflict)You've added another name in bold to the opening paragraph of "Ireland national football team" - this is not an alternative name for the team, so you should not add it to the lead in bold like this. Be aware that it is already mentioned further down in the lead. If you believe it is an alternative name, please provide a reference or citation to show that the team is called by this name. Also your additions around "Republic of Ireland" are unnecessary and factually incorrect. --HighKing (talk) 10:04, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Happy now? Not entirely sure how to do a citation in he footnote! Fasach Nua (talk) 10:17, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Actually no. You've not provided references that show that "Ireland national football team" is a name used to describe the Northern Ireland national football team. I don't believe you can because strictly speaking, it would then no longer be the Northern Ireland team, would it, which is what this article is about? You're mixing up the fact that the IFA used to organize a team called the "Ireland national football team", and the current team. Also, I don't think it's a good idea to drag the Ireland/Republic of Ireland arguement into the lead paragraph on this page - there's an arbcom process ongoing currently. --HighKing (talk) 10:34, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Just checking your references - your Sport and the Irish reference states that the practice of using the name Ireland was discontinued in the 1970s - so can we now please remove it from the lede? --HighKing (talk) 10:49, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
While it remains on FIFAs book, I think it should remain on the article, and I think that for over half this teams history it has been called Ireland gives added weight. I agree on the RoI bit, I would be content if it wasnt mentioned at all in the opening paragraph, however if it is, it should be accurate Fasach Nua (talk) 10:53, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I disagree. Trying to pass off a name never associated with the Northern Ireland team, not used by FIFA since the 1950s, and discontinued since the 1970s as a current name is disingenuous and dishonest. You're mixing up the fact the the IFA were in the habit of fielding two different teams under two different names for different competitions. This is not the same as what you've done which is to imply that the Northern Ireland team is sometimes called by an alternative name. Your references also do not back this up. I'll leave it to other editors to comment - I can see that you're just being silly on this one. --HighKing (talk) 11:10, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
HighKing is absolutely right. Northern Ireland only competes against the other "home nations" in World Cup and European Championships qualifiers, and only under the name Northern Ireland. They may have competed under the name "Ireland" in the past, but they haven't done so for a long time. The level of stirring that goes on over naming on nearly anything Ireland-related on Wikipedia is getting very tedious. --Nicknack009 (talk) 11:26, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

(outdent)The current opening paragraph reads:

Before 1921, all of Ireland was represented by a single side, the Ireland national football team, of which Northern Ireland is the continuation;

This isn't accurate - the Northern Ireland team is not seen as a continuation, although the IFA as an organization is a continuation. A small but important difference. --HighKing (talk) 16:14, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

How about something like "Before 1921, all of Ireland was represented by a single side, the Ireland national football team, organised by the IFA. After 1921 the IFA continued to organise the Northern Ireland team, and the newly-founded FAI organised a team to represent the Republic of Ireland"? --Nicknack009 (talk) 16:18, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I'd say go for it.MusicInTheHouse (talk) 16:24, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I've refined it a bit. It now says "Before 1921, all of Ireland was represented by a single side, the Ireland national football team, organised by the Irish Football Association (IFA). Since 1921, the IFA has been the organising body for the Northern Ireland team (for some time continuing to use the name "Ireland"), while the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has organised a separate team to represent the Republic of Ireland." --Nicknack009 (talk) 16:37, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
That's OK with me - I've changed the tense to present and tidied/tightened a little. --HighKing (talk) 16:52, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Righto - although I've tweaked the tense of the parenthetical bit to avoid the impression that the IFA still uses the name "Ireland". --Nicknack009 (talk) 17:16, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Reading that again, I'm not sure "Since 1921, the IFA is..." sounds quite right. I think you need "has been" after "since". Anyone have any better suggestions on the wording? --Nicknack009 (talk) 17:18, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Your tweak is better. --HighKing (talk) 17:27, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

First Game, etc[edit]

This article incorrectly lists the "First Game", "Biggest Win", and "Biggest Defeat". All the games mentioned were played by the Ireland national football team, and not by this team, Northern Ireland. Anyone know what the right data should be? Methinks the correct data (from the FIFA website and from this website) should be:

First Game: 22.10.1924 England 3 : 1 Northern Ireland, played in Liverpool, England.
Biggest Win: 01.02.1930 Northern Ireland 7 : 0 Wales, played in Belfast
Biggest Loss: 16.11.1949 Northern Ireland 2 : 9 England, played in Manchestr

Anyone else know? --HighKing (talk) 18:07, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

Despite the edits made today to the lead para, the NI team is considered the inheritor of the record of the old "Ireland" team, and so those are the records currently on the page seem accurate. One might argue for the addition of first game and greatest margins since the team was known as, and represented only, Northern Ireland, but the date of partition does not neatly and accurately identify that change. Kevin McE (talk) 22:59, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I disagree. Have you a source for this (the team being the continuation), not the fact that the IFA is the same organization that used to organize the Ireland national football team until 1922). Other sources (such as the one I provided) don't seem to have any trouble distinguishing between one team and the other. --HighKing (talk) 15:31, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
I agree with HighKing - if we are to be accurate considering the way the pages are setup then we should change the scores to the above.MusicInTheHouse (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 23:17, 4 April 2009 (UTC).

(outdent)I've updated the records according to the official FIFA website. The pre-1921 results are not attributed to the current Northern Ireland team history. Should I include a citation? --HighKing (talk) 21:29, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

According to that website Germany's first game was 1950, RoI didnt take the field until 1937, Italy didn't play until 1946, so I wouldnt give that site any credence. However the FIFA site does combine the entire history from 1882 to the present day into a single international record here, So if you would return the article to it's original state with citation, that would be appreciated Fasach Nua (talk) 18:13, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
Which is all correct. Perhaps you're mixing up the association with the team. This article isn't about the association, it's about the team. The page you've selected shows that the team "EIR" played in the earlier games, which is the team the association used to manage before it managed the "NIR" team. --HighKing (talk) 23:34, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
The current NI team is the original Ireland team (albeit required to play under the NI name in international (but not Home International) games after 1950), and its records go back to 1882. Look up any Rothmans (now Sky Sports) Football Yearbook or such and you will see the records for Northern Ireland dating back to 1882. Or online, look at RSSSF here. This book includes players going back to the early 20th century. This book covers all matches going back to 1882. This is the "complete Northern Ireland" from 1882-2008. Mooretwin (talk) 23:57, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
The Ireland national football team (1882–1950) article should really be merged into this one, which, as well as being correct, would also avoid the confusion indicated above. Mooretwin (talk) 23:58, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
The RSSSF site isn't a reliable source. See the site above for another fan site that correctly differentiates the TEAM from the ASSOCIATION. It's difficult to see what is in the books because you've given the Amazon sites and I don't have access to those books. But the FIFA website, which is the world governing body, also correctly differentiates between the EIR team and the NIR team, and since this article is about the NIR team (and not the association, or all games involving NI, or the greatest NI players ever, etc), then let's stick with official stats. --HighKing (talk) 01:11, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
I am not confusing the team and the association. You may not have access to the books, but I do. Are you suggesting that I am lying, when I say what these books record? Is Amazon lying when it refers in its synopsis to records going back to 1882? Is the cover of one of the books lying when it refers to 1882? Go into a bookshop and look up any football record book or annual, go to the international records section, look up Northern Ireland, and read all the results from 1882. There is no issue here. No dispute. When you say that the FIFA web site doesn't "correctly differentiates between the EIR team and the NIR team", what you mean is that it uses the EIR name for the NIR team before the 1950s. You will also notice that FIFA records all the results of the teams it refers to as EIR and NIR together, i.e. as part of a continuum - the same team under two different names. Please revert your changes. Thank you. Your reverts don't even make sense - it shows NI's "first match" as 1924 - where did that come from? It also refers to "Northern Ireland", when the team was known as "Ireland" outside the Home Internationals until 1953, and right up to the 1970s when it competed in the Home Internationals. Mooretwin (talk) 12:03, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Who said anything about accusing you of lying - calm down. All I have to go on is the Amazon synopsis of the books, which I often find to be inexact at best. Looking at the books you've picked - since I don't have the book (and you've not provided a quotation) - I can't see if there is a citation which states that the current Northern Ireland team is seen as a continuation. Many of the books (as on the back of one of the dust jackets) correctly differentiate between the NIR and EIR teams. I'm only basing my changes on the fact that the official FIFA statistics differentiate between the teams. And the reverts that don't make sense to you are based on those stats - they started using NIR in 1924. As for the "Home Internationals" - was that a FIFA recognised tournament? --HighKing (talk) 12:50, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
You're querying the sources that I have provided: the implication being that they do not support what I am saying. If I were to use sources in this way, would I not be lying?
I've already explained to you that the NI team was called Ireland before 1954 (against foreign opposition) and up to the 1970s (against the other home nations). The FIFA web site's differentiation must be in recognition of the FIFA agreement in 1954 which officially changed the name of the team (except in the Home Internationals). Ironically, the FIFA statistics to which you refer actually show the records of the teams matches together as a single record, albeit showing the old name - so they do not differentiate between "two teams", but between two names used by the same time.
It is the same team - recognised as such. Get a copy of any NI home programme and you will see the complete record of the team going back to 1882. I'v already advised you to go to a bookshop and pick up an annual - the Sky Sports (formerly Rothmans) "Bible", the Nationwide (formerly News of the World) annual or the NI Soccer Yearbook. The records will be there for NI from 1882 to present. Go and look at the other books I have cited.
FIFA's "stats" are clearly nonsensical in any case. What happened in 1924? If you are claiming that a brand new team was formed because of "partition", then 1921 would be the date. If you are claiming that a brand new team was formed after the IFA decided not to pick players from the South, then 1950 would be the date. If you are claiming that a brand new team was formed after it was agreed that the team should be known as "Northern Ireland", then 1954 would be the date.
Were the Home Internationals a FIFA recognised tournament? I'm afraid I don't know what a "FIFA recognised tournament" is. If you mean was it organised by FIFA, the answer is no. Why should that matter? Mooretwin (talk) 13:38, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Mooretwin, can we tone it done a notch? I'm not calling you a liar, and I'm not making any claims outside of the FIFA website. BTW, I appreciate you discussing this with me - thank you - and I appreciate your restraint in that you haven't reverted the article - thank you again. Stepping back, it's obvious that things aren't clear - we have some sources saying one thing, and other sources saying another. But I think I now partially understand why that is...FIFA tend to only recognize FIFA sanctioned matches, but the IFA have a bigger history than that. As to the 1924 date, Northern Ireland were not affiliated with FIFA from 1921 - 1923, and in 1924 they rejoined FIFA and from that date organized the Northern Ireland national side in FIFA competitions. I don't think the article makes it clear and I think it should (and it would help to explain why stats can differ). But don't forget that this article is called the "Northern Ireland national football team". Clearly an all-Ireland team was not a NI national side. The IFA are well within their rights to field other teams, not just a NI national side (which explains why the IFA retain the right to field an "Ireland" team in the Home Championships - and it's not a FIFA tournament btw). So the question is - from what date was there a "Northern Ireland national football team"? Well, I'd agree with FIFA and say 1924 because before that, they organized an all-Ireland side. --HighKing (talk) 16:21, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
FIFA would be wrong, because, up until 1950, the team was chosen from the whole island and purported to represent the whole island. The FAIFS team also claimed to represent the whole island, and hence the dispute, which was partially resolved in 1950 (when the IFA undertook only to pick players from NI) and finally resolved in 1954 (when the agreement was registered with FIFA and the two associations both agreed that neither of their teams would go by the name of Ireland). Nonetheless, there was a concession whereby NI was allowed to use the name Ireland in the Home Internationals. This continued in practice until the early 1970s (you can see from programmes of the time that Home International matches were billed as, e.g. Ireland v England, even after 1954). The practice petered out in the 1970s and the team was exclusively known as Northern Ireland from then on. Let me repeat that there is no dispute that there is absolute continuity from the first Ireland team in 1882 to the Northern Ireland team today. The records stand as a single record (as - ironically - can be seen on the FIFA site upon which you rely, and all the other records I have listed). The policy for picking players may have changed, and the name may have changed, but this is the history of the one team. Mooretwin (talk) 16:36, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
The 1924 date is of no relevance, other than it being the year that the IFA joined FIFA. It did not do so under the name "Northern Ireland", however. The team never went by this name until the 1950s. The jurisdiction of the IFA may have been restricted to Northern Ireland, but the IFA reserved the right to field the Irish national team. The FAIFS objected, but the other Home Nations continued to recognise the IFA's team as "Ireland". While the team was theoretically all-Ireland, the majority of players were always from NI (this may have partly been because the best Irish players were Northerners, because some Southern players did not wish to play for the IFA team, or because the IFA selecters were biased towards the North); and the team always played its home matches in Belfast. When the move to Northern Ireland happened in the 1950s, therefore, there was little impact in real terms - nothing changed other than the selectors were no longer able to continue to select the small number of Southern players that they had been doing. At the time, no-one - absolutely no-one - would have considered that a "new" team had been created. Mooretwin (talk) 16:46, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

(outdent)I understand. My point about 1924 is conjecture on my part - an attempt to understand why they picked 1924 - and I am assuming that they rejoined FIFA as the organizational body for the Northern Ireland national side at that point. They very well may have been free to organize other teams (i.e. Not a NI national side) for other competitions (e.g. British Home Championships). You say that there is no dispite that there is continuity from the first Ireland team to the Northern Ireland team today. Well, I disagree slightly - the IFA has coninuity. The IFA's record is a single record. But again, I point out that the Northern Ireland national football team (NINFT) is not the same as the all-Ireland team. And this is what this article is about. Or put another way. There's a number of questions pertinent to this:

At what point did the Northern Ireland National Football Team come into existence?
Is the birth of the NINFT related to FIFA? Where does 1924 come into it?
Did the IFA always organize a NINFT from the start?
Does the IFA organize other senior teams which are not the NINFT?

Perhaps if the article was named "Senior Teams organized by the IFA" it would make sense to include the all-Ireland stats as part of this article. Or perhaps the best thing is to create a section dealing specifically with the non-NINFT matches and results? --HighKing (talk) 16:56, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

"Northern Ireland national football team" is the name given to this article on Wikipedia. The Northern Ireland team is the successor of the Ireland team, which played its first match in 1882. The history of the team is a continuum. Changes of names and changes of selection policy don't alter that, and don't mean that this article should exclude records before 1954/1950/1924/1921 (whichever date the logic of your argument takes you). The sources show that there is a single historical record, and that NI's first match was in 1882, not "1924"(?). Similarly, the German national team is the successor of the West Germany team, and the article there does not give the first match as 1990. The Pakistan cricket article does not give Pakistan's first match as 1971. The India article does not give India's first match as 1947. Mooretwin (talk) 18:13, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
You say the NI team is the successor? You're mixing up the Association with the team. "Sources say..."? Sources differ, and many differentiate the teams, and the official FIFA site statistics differ. The German national team? That area expanded, not contracted, which makes it an easier problem, but regardless, what does the FIFA site say. Cricket? Again, what does the international cricket association say. We're not here to debate what should or shouldn't be, or our own opinions. I've asked some questions above which might help to resolve how this article should evolve and to try to figure out how best to present the data. --HighKing (talk) 18:33, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

Obviously FIFA considers the entire history of the IFA international team to be an unbroken line perhaps if you restate what your questions are, these can be addressed appropriately 19:19, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

I'm not mixing up the association with the team. All the sources cited so far, including FIFA, consider the NI team's record to go back to 1882. You dismiss the treatment of Germany because the area expanded, rather than contracted, yet the principle is the same: the jurisdiction of the team changed but it is still the same team. Prior to 1990, the West German team was recognised as the successor to the German team from before the war - so that is an example of an area contracting yet a team retaining the records of the larger area. Pakistan and India are the same in cricket, and the "international cricket association" recognises the current Pakistan team's records going back to 1947 and not 1971, despite the "area contracting". Mooretwin (talk) 20:38, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
I have in front of me the Sky Sports Football Yearbook 2009-2010 (formerly Rothmans), which is the football equivalent to cricket's Wisden (i.e. a recognised authority). On pp.920-926, in the section "International Appearances 1872-2009 - Northern Ireland", there is a list of every player who played for Ireland/Northern Ireland from 1882 to the present: all one record of one team. Mooretwin (talk) 20:38, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
But that's exactly my point. It lists every player who played for "Ireland/Northern Ireland". Clearly the "Northern Ireland National Football Team" has an actual start date, which is not the same as the "Ireland national football team". They are not the same thing, and the all-Ireland results do not belong in an article on the "Northern Ireland national football team". You say the team records show a continuous history - clearly it doesn't since it can't. --HighKing (talk) 00:10, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
According to FIFA here NI have played England 86 times, in non-competitive internationals, with the earliest of these being in 1882. If you use a 1924 start date the number of games is 48 and does not correspond to FIFA's count, the only date for the creation of the NI team that tallies with FIFA's figures is 1882. Fasach Nua (talk) 04:51, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
And why, HighKing, do you think that you know better than FIFA and all other cited football records, which recognise the NI team's history as dating back to 1882? The team's name has changed and its selection policy/jurisdiction has evolved over time, but it has always been recognised as a continuum, just as the Germany-West Germany-Germany team has. Where is your evidence that a new team was created in 1924? Mooretwin (talk) 09:13, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
Now why would you resort to commentary like this? Mooretwin, you know better, and we've had many discussions in the past and managed to keep things civil (friendly even) and get to the bottom of stuff. There's genuine questions here. We've seen on the FIFA site that they organize their stats according to the member associations, and we've seen that they use an EIR identifier to differentiate between the All-Ireland team and the Northern Ireland national team. All I'm saying is that this article is clearly not about the Member Association, but about the Northern Ireland national team. The stats you've replaced into the article are associated with the all-Ireland team. I can't find stats anywhere on the FIFA site for Northern Ireland (like biggest win, biggest loss, etc), not can I find those stats on the IrishFA website. For me, it is clear that at some point in time (when?) a "Northern Ireland national football team" came into existence, and this should be the date we use for records. --HighKing (talk) 12:06, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
It's historically the same team, and recognised as such by FIFA and all other reliable sources provided here in accordance with policy. When it became purely a NI team is a matter of opinion (1921, 1950 or 1954: take your pick), and not of relevance to the records section in dispute, any more than the splitting or unification of Germany is relevant to the German team's records. Your issue about distinguishing between the association and the team is a red herring. Mooretwin (talk) 12:24, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
FWIW, the Scottish FA puts all the Northern Ireland / Ireland (IFA) results under "Northern Ireland". I think this is the correct approach because there is no clear date where "Ireland" stops and "Northern Ireland" begins, due to the period when both the IFA and the FAI claimed to represent all of Ireland. It is clear, however, that the IFA was founded in 1880 and has fielded a selection for almost that whole period. It is also clear when the FAI was founded, and the Republic of Ireland national football team article includes the period of time when the FAI claimed all of Ireland. Its "first game" is Irish Free State v Bulgaria in the 1924 Olympics, even though the name Republic of Ireland was not adopted until the 1950s. For the sake of consistency (if nothing else) the two "Northern Ireland" articles should be merged. It's the same organisation picking their selection of players. Jmorrison230582 (talk) 12:52, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, I agree with that. The existence of two separate articles appears merely to be causing confusion. How do we go about seeking a merger? Mooretwin (talk) 13:18, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
Can we deal with the merger as a separate topic? On this topic, I understand why the Scottish FA may decide to group things like that. But so far, everybody has agreed in some respects that the all-Ireland results are not for the NINFT, but that it's "handy" or "convenient" to put the results here since the Irish FA organized senior team since the 1880's. None of that is in dispute, but clearly since this article is not about the Irish FA, but is about the NINFT, and the stats do not refer to the NINFT, can anyone else see the point I'm making? It all boils down to the title of this article really... --HighKing (talk) 13:43, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
That appears to be a misrepresentation. I don't see anyone arguing on the grounds of "handiness" or "convenience". Mooretwin (talk) 14:27, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
There is a clear inconsistency with the Republic of Ireland national football team. It's first game is given as being played in 1924, even though the FAI was claiming jurisdiction over the whole of Ireland and the team was known as "Irish Free State". Yet that is (correctly) viewed as being one continuous team. Jmorrison230582 (talk) 14:47, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
The current name and remit of the team is Northern Ireland, and that is why the article is so-named. The records of the team currently known as Northern Ireland go back to 1882. Because the team used to play under a different name and remit doesn't mean that we should go against official recognition, common practice, reliable sources, artificially alter the team's records and create two articles giving the false impression that a new team was created at some unspecified and unverified point in time (whether that be 1921, 1924, 1950 or 1954). We don't do it for Germany. We don't do it for Pakistan or India. Mooretwin (talk) 14:17, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
OK, I understand the point you're making, and TBH, thinking about the separate article - I don't think the separate article is necessarily a good idea either. So I'd agree to merge the articles, but we'd need to keep the all-Ireland stats as well as show the stats from the NINFT, so that both POV's are shown. Also, we should remove the flag from the all-ireland team stats. --HighKing (talk) 15:06, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
I think, and FIFA thinks (looking at its official website) that we are in the same situation of the couples Russia/USSR, Serbia/Yugoslavia, Czech Rep/Czechoslovakia. We have FAs which actually have a name and a geographical jurisdiction, but in past had a different name and a larger jurisdiction, even if FIFA recognizes them as the same associations. So, if statistics of Serbia are merged with the ones of Yugoslavia, the same thing must happen with Northern Ireland and United Ireland.--Civitatem (talk) 17:07, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
That's a very good example of a similar situation. As a matter of interest, does FIFA also have a different association member 3 letter code for the later association teams (e.g. EIR was the all-Ireland team, NIR is the NINFT). The page on Czech Republic national football team appears to include both stats, which is what I suggested above. I'm happy to apply the same here. On the other hand, the Serbia national football team only appears to have newer stats... --HighKing (talk) 19:25, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
The trig names are a relatively modern invention, I would be surprised if EIR was formally allocated to the NI team, and nothing significant happened in FIFA or the IFA in 1924 to induce a change Fasach Nua (talk) 15:45, 9 September 2009 (UTC)
There's no way that EIR is allocated to the NI team. But it is allocated to the IFA. Which is the point I've been trying to make all along. Anyway, there doesn't appear to be anybody disagreeing with putting in both stats using the Czech Republic national football team as a guideline. --HighKing (talk) 12:29, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
Do you have a reference for this? Fasach Nua (talk) 17:30, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Here's a reference for NI's record going back to 1882:

Northern Ireland have played 555 full soccer internationals since 1882. They have won 139 games, drawn 125 and lost 291. The goals for are 592 and against 111. (From the official match programme: Northern Ireland vs Slovakia (9 September 2009), published by the Irish Football Association. Mooretwin (talk) 22:38, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
I don't take position for one or other, I only urge the community to take a sole decision for similar situations: Ireland/Ulster, Yugoslavia/Serbia, Ussr/Russia, Czechoslovakia/Czech Rep.--Civitatem (talk) 00:33, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
All these other teams have clear cut off points, this one doesnt! There is 60 year window, from the 1920s to the 1980s to choose from, and the cut off could be:
  • NI founding
  • IFS founding
  • FAI founding
  • RoI first game
  • Ireland's last games with a southern born player
  • First game with NI name
  • most recent game as Ireland
Fasach Nua (talk) 05:49, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I think that FIFA recognises the Czech Republic as the successor team to Czechoslovakia, and that a single record is accordingly recognised. Ditto for Russia and USSR, and for Serbia and Yugoslavia. Mooretwin (talk) 08:42, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Useful official sources: [3], [4], [5], [6]. --Civitatem (talk) 17:11, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Which is exactly what I've been trying to do, but official statistics appear to be hard to come by. And it occurs to me that we may be assuming that the NINFT only plays FIFA games. What team used to play in the British Championships? Was that also the NINFT or was that a different team (because FIFA don't recognize that tournament, therefore it's not included in the stats, therefore are the other stats correct?) --HighKing (talk) 18:28, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Whether or not FIFA "recognises" a tournament is irrelevant. (And, no, there weren't "two teams" - one for "FIFA games" and one for others.(!)) Mooretwin (talk) 19:34, 12 September 2009 (UTC)

. And editors here continue to mix up the country (Northern Ireland) with the FIFA member association (Irish FA), with this team that this article is about (Northern Ireland National Football Team). As to Fasach Nua's questions above, the NINFT was created when the IFA became a FIFA member in 1923. That is why FIFA use EIR for matches before that date, and NIR for matches after that date.

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, could you please provide this, thanks Fasach Nua (talk) 19:03, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
Based on the FIFA website where NIR was founded in 1880 and was affiliated (first) in 1911. Why do I get the feeling that you're not really trying to understand this non-trivial issue. --HighKing (talk) 20:06, 11 September 2009 (UTC)


Well, the FIFA web site appears to contradict your claims, then. Mooretwin (talk) 19:31, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
No, the FIFA website contradicts your claims. --HighKing (talk) 16:01, 13 September 2009 (UTC)

Just stating some facts as they've been established:

  • Irish FA founded in 1880
  • Affiliated with FIFA in 1911
  • FIFA attribute all games until 1923 to EIR
  • FIFA attribute all games after 1923 to NIR
  • FAI founded in 1921
  • FAI affiliated to FIFA in 1923
  • The IFA record books show records going back to 1880
  • The IFA played in tournaments which were not FIFA affiliated after 1923
  • This article is about the Northern Ireland national football team (NINFT)

So the main question in order to get to the bottom of this:

  • Where have the overall stats in this article come from. Actually - is there anywhere on the web where we can look at the stats (seems like an obvious website to have, but I can't find a thing) This would show if other sites classify EIR games separately from NIR games (and stats). --HighKing (talk) 20:06, 11 September 2009 (UTC)
I've given several sources for the stats. Mooretwin (talk) 19:34, 12 September 2009 (UTC)
Your sources appear to be written about football in Northern Ireland, not about the NINFT. --HighKing (talk) 16:01, 13 September 2009 (UTC)
I find it odd that you think that Northern Ireland Greats, Northern Ireland International Football Facts, The Complete Northern Ireland and official souvenir programmes for every Northern Ireland match are not about the Northern Ireland team. I can, however, clarify for you that they are. Just to assist your memory, other sources included every Rothmans (now Sky Sports) Football Yearbook ever, every Playfair Football Annual ever, every Northern Ireland Soccer Yearbook, every News of the World (now Nationwide) Football Annual, etc. Mooretwin (talk) 16:15, 13 September 2009 (UTC)
And do they make a distinction? Many books don't bother to distinguish all-Ireland results from the NINFT results because it would just get too confusing. The records *are* held by the IFA, which is the organization for NI. That's why *some* weight must be given to the official FIFA source. OK, what about, as a suggestion, somewhere in the article we list the record since the formation of the NINFT and also list the current all-Ireland records? Everyone wins. The article is better. Readers will get better informed. --HighKing (talk) 20:44, 24 September 2009 (UTC)

Current Squad[edit]

I have just updated the current squad and also Recent Call-Ups section. If anyone feels that the recent call-ups bit is too long move it here for easier modification for future squads. Cheers! --Nifg (talk) 10:28, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

Is the "Most Capped Players" table out of date? For example The Irish FA website list Maik Taylor as having more caps than the table. --HighKing (talk) 16:34, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Records and squad stats updated up to and including last Saturday's game against Poland. --Nifg (talk) 18:18, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

Controversy and Sectarianism[edit]

I think this entire section should be removed or at least re written, the Lennon saga was over 9 years ago and i feel no longer relevant to the current team. --Pumba(talk) 20:56, 7 December 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Au contraire: --Eamonnca1 (talk) 08:15, 12 February 2011 (UTC)

Mooretwin has demanded that I take this to talk instead of "edit warring" as he calls my single revert. The following text has been removed: "However, crowd trouble remains a problem." This is a perfectly valid statement and is supported by the citation given. There was crowd trouble at the NI/Scotland game at the weekend, ergo crowd trouble remains a problem. --Eamonnca1 (talk) 18:18, 23 February 2011 (UTC)

Crowd trouble hasn't been a problem so can't really remain so. You seem to be emphasising recent events too much. See WP:recentism. Mooretwin (talk) 21:35, 23 February 2011 (UTC)
Deleting something because it has, in the short term, ceased to be the case is also open to the charge of recentism. Rather than deletion of notable issues, they should be communicated in the relevant tense. Kevin McE (talk) 22:08, 23 February 2011 (UTC)
The material was added and then removed by another poster. An edit war began, so I removed it pending consensus being achieved. Mooretwin (talk) 00:09, 24 February 2011 (UTC)
Good point. How about "Crowd trouble is a problem" or "crowd trouble has returned"? Or maybe "Crowd trouble has been a problem at various times" and then we could go on to list all the incidents that have occurred? --Eamonnca1 (talk) 22:41, 23 February 2011 (UTC)

There was no crowd trouble at the Scotland game. There was not a single arrest outside the ground or in Dublin that day. If crowd trouble is pissed up fans urinating in the streets then we better cancel St Paddys dayFifa-NI (talk) 21:47, 25 February 2011 (UTC)

No trouble at the game? The cited source says "Ballymena United defender Denver Gage is at the centre of an IFA inquiry into the singing of sectarian songs at the Northern Ireland v Scotland game." (Emphasis mine.) Please mind your language and be WP:CIVIL. --Eamonnca1 (talk) 00:30, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
Yes the inquiry was into singing of sectarian songs by 50 out of 5000 people. There was no crowd trouble. The current wording of the article as it stands is fineFifa-NI (talk) 13:29, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
So the entire crowd has to get involved before it can be considered 'trouble'? Let's delete the entire Heysel Stadium Riot article then. --Eamonnca1 (talk) 01:53, 28 February 2011 (UTC)

DAB name[edit]

There are 3 codes in Ireland and Northern Ireland called football hence why it's Association_football_in_Northern_Ireland not Football_in_Northern_Ireland Gnevin (talk) 21:14, 4 July 2010 (UTC)

Why is it Football in England, then, where there are also three codes? Mooretwin (talk) 21:30, 4 July 2010 (UTC)
Because football in England isn't as ambiguous . Football in England generally means Association football. In Ireland it's very ambiguous Gnevin (talk) 21:48, 4 July 2010 (UTC)
But this encyclopaedia isn't read only in Ireland and England. Mooretwin (talk) 22:05, 5 July 2010 (UTC)
And it isn't only read in America but that is at Soccer rather than football Gnevin (talk) 23:34, 5 July 2010 (UTC)
The title would possibly be ambiguous if there was an article about a Northern Ireland national Gaelic football team, but there isn't. It's quite clear what the article is about. Onetonycousins (talk) 21:57, 6 July 2010 (UTC)


Northern Ireland does not have a flag, so why is it being used? The flag that is being used does not exist anymore.Sheodred (talk) 15:48, 31 May 2011 (UTC)

It is still the official Northern Ireland Football Flag according to fifa [7] C. 22468 (talk) 12:46, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

Record defeat[edit]

The article currently says "On 18 February 1882, fifteen months after the founding of the Irish FA, Ireland made their international debut against England, losing 13–0 in a friendly played at Bloomfield in Belfast. This remains the record win for England and the record defeat for the (Northern) Ireland team."

What was the "(Northern) Ireland team" that played in 1882? There was no such place as "Northern Ireland", no such team as "Northern Ireland" and certainly no such team as "(Northern) Ireland". The team was called "Ireland", the country was called "Ireland" and there was nothing "Northern" or "(Northern)" about it. --Eamonnca1 TALK 17:56, 10 August 2011 (UTC)

That's why "Northern" is in brackets, mate. The text is written in the present: it remains the record defeat for the (Northern) Ireland team. The team's called Northern Ireland now, mate. Mooretwin (talk) 23:29, 10 August 2011 (UTC)
And it wasn't called (Northern) Ireland at the time of the defeat, so putting it in brackets makes even less sense. It was a record defeat for the Ireland team and remains a record defeat for the Ireland team. And please don't call me 'mate'. --Eamonnca1 TALK 02:28, 11 August 2011 (UTC)
Of course it wasn't called (Northern) Ireland at the time of the defeat: it was called Ireland ... but it's been called Northern Ireland for the past 60 years and it remains the record defeat! "Remaining a record defeat for the Ireland team" doesn't make sense because the team is now called Northern Ireland! Does Newton Heath have separate records from Manchester United? Mooretwin (talk) 20:40, 11 August 2011 (UTC)

Not the way to conduct a constructive discussion. Given that the team in question is the subject of the article, paraphrasing was not difficult: now reads "This remains the record defeat for the team, and also England's largest winning margin." Kevin McE (talk) 15:29, 11 August 2011 (UTC)

Green uniforms[edit]

The above was discussed a few years ago on this page. Does any one have any sources around why the players wear green? There was a suggestion by one editor that they formerly wore blue. Any sources around that too? Thanks. Frenchmalawi (talk) 16:01, 12 January 2013 (UTC)

Clarify sectarianism section[edit]

The section may be clear enough for British or Irish people, but for foreigners like me it's not quite clear. From what I know about the Northern Ireland conflict, I would guess that Republicans/Catholics do not usually cheer for Northern Ireland, but for the Republic. But I don't know if that's true, because the section is very vague. Please make it better understandable for non-British/Irish people. Thanks. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:48, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

  • It isn't that black and white, there are plenty of Catholics who cheer for Northern Ireland. Also to clarify, the terms Catholic and Republican are not interchangeable - one is a religious denomination and one is a political stance. (talk) 09:43, 1 August 2019 (UTC)

I have changed this to 'historic' in its title, for reasons outlined in edit summary, Also the first line of the first paragraph is in past tense as is much of the article thus it makes sense for the title to be also. Can always be changed back if new issues arise which as a supporter I see as unlikely. Open to discussion though as I do have an aforementioned bias. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:56, 2 October 2017 (UTC)

What happened?![edit]

Someone wiped out the flag on the football fox tag! All pictures where that's supposed to be has been declared null!


#bodyContent a[title="User:Aaxelpediaa"] { background-color: #0000ff; color: #ff0000; font-weight: bold; (talk) 03:50, 13 August 2018 (UTC)

Recent edits[edit]

Please stop removing the distiction between the Ireland national football team (1882–1950) and the Northern Ireland team. It is not disputed that one is the successor of the other, but that doesn't mean it's the same thing. There is an important distinction between the two, hence Wikipedia has two articles. Removing that distinction removes informative material. Leaving the article as it was shows that the modern Northern Ireland team is the successor of the old Ireland team, but acxknowledges that things changed, and the modern Northern Ireland team does not represent the whole of Ireland, or claim to. It is a different entity than the old Ireland team, even if there is continuity between them. --Nicknack009 (talk) 20:27, 2 June 2020 (UTC)

This has been discussed before at length on this page and a position was agreed, the history is continous which is the position the Irish FA who administer the Northern Ireland team take, if you want to go down the road you are taking, then caps, appearances, goals etc all have to be separated into Northern Ireland caps and Ireland caps. You have listed the first NI game as being against Scotland in 1953, that is not correct the team that took to the pitch in that match was Ireland, as i said previously this has all been discussed before on this talk page, everyone acknowledged that it was complex issue but a position was agreed, and the article has been presented that way for the last approx 10 years until your recent edits. --HateBigotry (talk) 22:55, 3 June 2020 (UTC)
9 days have now passed since i replied to your post and you have not responded. After you complained to the wikiproject football page about me continually reverting your edits and restoring the article back to the long agreed position, we were told to take it to this talk page to resolve. I would appreciate a response --HateBigotry (talk) 21:16, 12 June 2020 (UTC)
I have made my point. I don't know what else there is to say, but if you insist, I'll say it again. The article is about the Northern Ireland national football team, not the Ireland national football team (1882–1950), which has a separate article. Claiming records for the Northern Ireland team before Northern Ireland even existed makes no sense, and ignores the distinction that Wikipedia (in my view, correctly) draws. --Nicknack009 (talk) 20:25, 12 June 2020 (UTC)
The history of the team is continous, the geopraphical territory of Northern Ireland has always been covered by the team created in 1882, Northern Ireland team records include all games from 1882 onwards as do caps, goals, managerial records, clean sheets etc etc, that is the position of the Irish FA who administer the team. There is no distinction taken by the Irish FA. As i pointed out in my earlier post how have you plucked out the first Northern Ireland game as being in 1953? Why not 1921 when the province of Northern Ireland was created or 1946 when the original Ireland team joined FIFA or 1951 when FIFA decreed that the original Ireland team could no longer pick players from the Republic of Ireland, or the late 1970's when the Northern Ireland name was used officially for all games, when you go down the road you want to go down you open a massive can of worms that is totally unnecessary, that is why the previous position had been agreed and had been stuck too for this last 10 years.--HateBigotry (talk) 22:59, 16 June 2020 (UTC)
I didn't choose that date. Somebody else chose it, I changed it back to that date. I'm open to another date. Is anyone else going to get involved in the discussion? --Nicknack009 (talk) 08:37, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
The 1953 date doesn't make any sense that i can see and is an example of how complex the situation is when you try to go down this road, there is no specific start point for the Northern Ireland national team, the team has just played games continually from 1882 being administered by the Irish FA in Belfast, so when you list in the info box stats as (as Northern Ireland), how do you quantify that? first game from Northern Ireland came into existence 1921? FIFA membership 1946? Only pick players from NI 1951? Or when the team was called Northern Ireland in official games, which is even more complicated as the team competed in FIFA tournaments as Northern Ireland, and in non FIFA tournaments as Ireland right up to the late 1970's, as i have said the situation is complex and this is why it was agreed many years ago the cleanest way to leave the entry was with one set of records as the Irish FA themselves record the history. If there were clear start/end points like in the case of Yugoslavia/Serbia and Montenegro/Serbia then you could say it made sense to list these separate records but that is not the case.--HateBigotry (talk) 18:00, 23 June 2020 (UTC)