Football/Soccer

Conor Washington home at last - but hoping for more Euro travel

Conor Washington during Northern Ireland training session yesterday.
Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

HAVING brought his sporting tour of the UK almost back home, Conor Washington is aiming to get away to a flier with Northern Ireland tomorrow night.

Born in Chatham, Kent, he’s now with his nearest Football League club, Charlton Athletic, after a peripatetic career which has taken him from Cornwall to Wales, from the east midlands to west London, from south Yorkshire to the Scottish capital.

His time in Edinburgh ended unhappily, with Hearts suffering a contentious relegation, so for the third consecutive summer he switched clubs, to the Addicks, in League One.

“My wife is delighted again, moving up the country,” he says with a smile. “No, it’s been going really well and I’ve been doing really well. Obviously, I know a lot of the lads from playing with and against them. It’s been easy to settle in and we’ve made an okay start to the season. We’d like to get new faces in and kick on for a long season.

“It’s a lot closer to my family. I loved living in Edinburgh but you forget how much you miss your family and with the little man it’s nice to be back in those surroundings.”

However, he is hoping for more travelling next summer, to the postponed Euro 2020 tournament, but first NI must win away to Bosnia & Herzegovina in the play-off semi-final.

“It’s been a frustrating 12 months after going to Hearts and having the season we had, getting injured and the Covid-19 hits. I’ve been trying to stay fit during the lockdown and after the move I want to kick on.”

Recalling the two Nations League matches against Bosnia in 2018 gives the visitors hope, insists Washington:

“If you look at those two games and the performances, especially in the home game we created a lot of chances and should have been two or three up.

“I looked on from the bench and we were brilliant. We just need to put in another performance like that and get back to playing the way we know we can.

“These one-off games have always suited us and as a group we are really looking forward it. Last month’s results weren’t great and we are feeling like a wounded animal. We want to put in a good performance that the fans can be proud of.”

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