EURO 2016: Kyle Lafferty promises spirited response from Northern Ireland ahead of Ukraine test

Northern Ireland train ahead of Thursday's game with Ukraine
Northern Ireland train ahead of Thursday's game with Ukraine

Kyle Lafferty has guaranteed an improved Northern Ireland display when they attempt to revive their Euro 2016 campaign against Ukraine on Thursday.

A flat European Championship finals debut versus Poland in Nice at the weekend has left Michael O’Neill’s side facing elimination from the tournament in France if they cannot get a positive result in Lyon.

With reigning world champions Germany lying in wait next week, Northern Ireland’s last-16 hopes have been pinned on beating the Ukrainians, though there will have to be a marked improvement from the 1-0 loss to the Poles when they failed to register a single shot on target.

However, the typically-forthright Lafferty is adamant O’Neill’s team will be better in their second group game.

“For Michael, for his coaching staff, for all the people who’ve paid good money to come out here, we let them down and we’ll put it right on Thursday,” he insisted.

“A win could take us out of this group. We still have belief. We’ve got two games to put it right and I’m sure we’ll give a better performance than we did against Poland.

“We’ll look into it, get our heads sorted, get our tactics right and I know we’ll put up a far better performance than this.

“Not one player will let the fans down. Even if we don’t get the result we want on Thursday, the fight and determination that got us here will be there.”