WATCH: Northern Ireland squad ‘deeply saddened’ by Manchester attack - Michael O’Neill

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill
Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill

Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill says he and his players are ‘deeply saddened’ by the terror atrocity in Manchester.

The international team has been training in the city this week ahead of their forthcoming friendly with New Zealand at Windsor Park and World Cup qualifier away to Azerbaijan.

He gave the Irish FA his reaction to Monday night’s shocking events. 

“I think when the news filtered out everyone was deeply saddened and shocked at the events and as we find out more about the casualties and the people of who have been injured our thoughts are with all the families,” he said.

“I think [a concert] is something our players would go to, and go their with their kids as well. 

“It’s a time for us to reflect and our thoughts are very much with all those people who have unfortunately been involved.”

NI midfielder Oliver Norwood, who grew up in nearby Burnley, has described the attack as ‘madness’. 

“I spent a lot of time in the city and it’s like a second home to me,” he said.

“It’s devastating to think that young children who went to a concert did not come home to their parents.”

“It’s difficult to think about what happened because it’s madness.”

Northern Ireland midfielder Oliver Norwood grew up in Burnley, near Manchester

Northern Ireland midfielder Oliver Norwood grew up in Burnley, near Manchester

Northern Ireland skipper Steven Davis took to Twitter to offer his thoughts on the horrific news.

“Sickening attack on innocent people,” he wrote. “Thoughts and prayers with everyone affected.”