Martin Paterson's late penalty secured a draw for Northern Ireland in an entertaining friendly at Windsor Park.

A Shane Ferguson volley and near-post finish from Kyle Lafferty put the hosts 2-0 ahead, but Finland were soon level.

Tim Sparv headed in before Teemu Pukki pounced on a Chris Brunt error to equalise after 24 minutes.

A superb free-kick from Perparim Hetemaj gave Finland a deserved lead but Paterson levelled six minutes from time after winning the spot-kick.

There was a tribute to former Northern Ireland captain Alan McDonald, who died in June, before the game started on a quick surface following heavy afternoon rain.

Ferguson's excellent opener, a sweetly struck volley from Dean Shiels' deflected cross, was his first international goal and also the first for boss Michael O'Neill since he took charge.

Lafferty made it a perfect start for the hosts when he nipped in to steer a Shiels cross onto the net.

Kyle Lafferty celebrates his goal with Dean Shiels

Kyle Lafferty celebrates his goal with Dean Shiels

However, the Windsor faithful had little time to enjoy the lead as the Finns hit back with two quick goals.

Sparv pulled one back on 22 minutes, his fine header from Kari Arkivuo's cross hitting the top corner.

Brunt gifted Finland their equaliser, with Pukki intercepting the midfielder's backpass before poking past the advancing Roy Carroll.

Njazi Kuqi twice shot wide as the visitors provided the greater threat for the remainder of the half.

Finland gained a grip on affairs after the break and went close when substitute Riku Riski blazed just over.

Lafferty was presented with a rare opportunity for Northern Ireland but his low shot was easily saved by Niki Maenpaa.

Joona Toivio wasted an excellent chance by glancing a header wide at the backpost from Jere Uronen's inswinging cross.

Gareth McAuley came to the rescue when he cleared Riski's goalbound effort a yard from the line after Carroll was beaten.

Nothing could stop Hetemaj's free-kick, his strike from just outside the box rocketing into the net after hitting the angle of crossbar and post.

An equaliser looked unlikely but Paterson converted from the spot after being tugged by Tovio as he ran on to a pass.

It was a patchy performance from Northern Ireland but scoring three goals will provide some confidence ahead of the opening World Cup qualifier against Russia in Moscow on 7 September.

Lineup, Bookings (0) & Substitutions (9)

Northern Ireland

  • 12 Carroll (Camp - 46' )
  • 02 Hodson (Norwood - 84' )
  • 03 McGivern
  • 04 McAuley
  • 06 Baird
  • 17 Ferguson (Carson - 84' )
  • 20 Cathcart
  • 08 Davis
  • 11 Brunt (Ward - 46' )
  • 19 Shiels
  • 10 Lafferty (Paterson - 63' )

Substitutes

  • 01 Camp
  • 23 Mannus
  • 05 McPake
  • 13 Lafferty
  • 14 Clingan
  • 16 Norwood
  • 18 Carson
  • 07 Little
  • 09 Paterson
  • 15 Grigg
  • 21 Ward

Finland

  • 01 Maenpaa
  • 02 Uronen
  • 03 Moisander
  • 04 Toivio
  • 13 Arkivuo
  • 07 Eremenko
  • 14 Sparv
  • 21 Hamalainen (Kolehmainen - 69' )
  • 10 Pukki (Riski - 46' )
  • 18 Kuqi (Sjolund - 84' )
  • 20 Eremenko (Hetemaj - 69' )

Substitutes

  • 12 Sillanpaaa
  • 05 Ojala
  • 15 Halsti
  • 06 Vayrynen
  • 08 Hetemaj
  • 11 Riski
  • 16 Sjolund
  • 17 Porokara
  • 19 Kolehmainen
  • 09 Furuholm
Ref: Liesveld
Att: 9,575

Match Stats

Shots

8 14

On target

4 10

Corners

3 10

Fouls

7 6

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +3:04 Full time

Full Time The referee blows his whistle to end the game.

90:00 +2:56

Josh Carson has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the left-hand upright.

90:00 +2:20

The ball is crossed by Dean Shiels.

90:00 +1:59

Dean Shiels takes the outswinging corner, Daniel Sjolund manages to make a clearance.

88:29

Inswinging corner taken by Daniel Sjolund from the left by-line.

88:01

The ball is sent over by Ryan McGivern.

87:17

Free kick awarded for a foul by Toni Kolehmainen on Oliver Norwood. Direct free kick taken by Oliver Norwood.

85:33

Shot from long range by Niklas Moisander misses to the left of the goal.

84:24

Free kick awarded for a foul by Josh Carson on Toni Kolehmainen. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Daniel Sjolund, clearance by Steven Davis.

83:23 Substitution

Substitution Shane Ferguson leaves the field to be replaced by Josh Carson.

83:23 Goal scored

Goal! - Martin Paterson - N Ireland 3 - 3 Finland Penalty taken right-footed by Martin Paterson and scored. Northern Ireland 3-3 Finland.

82:19 Substitution

Substitution Lee Hodson leaves the field to be replaced by Oliver Norwood.

82:19 Substitution

Substitution Daniel Sjolund on for Njazi Kuqi.

82:19

Penalty awarded for a foul by Joona Toivio on Martin Paterson.

80:17

Dean Shiels crosses the ball.

77:12

The assist for the goal came from Toni Kolehmainen.

77:12 Goal scored

Goal! - Perparim Hetemaj - N Ireland 2 - 3 Finland Perparim Hetemaj finds the net with a goal direct from the free kick from just outside the box to the top left corner of the goal. Northern Ireland 2-3 Finland.

76:30

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Toni Kolehmainen by Ryan McGivern.

73:33

Martin Paterson is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Niklas Moisander.

73:10

Riku Riski takes a shot. Clearance made by Gareth McAuley.

72:32

Effort on goal by Steven Davis from long range goes harmlessly over the bar.

68:50 Substitution

Substitution Perparim Hetemaj joins the action as a substitute, replacing Alexei Eremenko.

68:23 Substitution

Substitution (Finland) makes a substitution, with Toni Kolehmainen coming on for Kasper Hamalainen.

67:38

Roman Eremenko concedes a free kick for a foul on Dean Shiels. Dean Shiels takes the direct free kick.

63:38

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Alexei Eremenko from the left by-line to the near post, Joona Toivio takes a shot. Blocked by Gareth McAuley.

62:38 Substitution

Substitution (Northern Ireland) makes a substitution, with Martin Paterson coming on for Kyle Lafferty.

60:25

Riku Riski produces a cross.

58:16

Inswinging corner taken by Alexei Eremenko from the left by-line.

57:00

Corner taken by Alexei Eremenko.

56:45

Roman Eremenko takes a shot. Ryan McGivern gets a block in.

55:14

Jere Uronen crosses the ball, Header from close range by Joona Toivio misses to the right of the goal.

54:28

Alexei Eremenko takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line to the near post, Dean Shiels makes a clearance. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Alexei Eremenko from the left by-line.

54:08

Shot by Roman Eremenko. Craig Cathcart gets a block in.

53:33

Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Alexei Eremenko from the right by-line, clearance made by Ryan McGivern.

53:19

Kari Arkivuo delivers the ball, blocked by Ryan McGivern.

52:13

Unfair challenge on Alexei Eremenko by Jamie Ward results in a free kick. Alexei Eremenko takes the direct free kick. Dean Shiels takes a shot. Niklas Moisander gets a block in.

51:09

Jamie Ward produces a left-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.

49:09

The official flags Tim Sparv offside. Lee Camp restarts play with the free kick.

48:10

Kyle Lafferty takes a shot. Niki Maenpaa makes a save.

47:11

Riku Riski has an effort at goal from outside the area missing to the wide right of the goal.

46:40

Jamie Ward fouled by Tim Sparv, the ref awards a free kick. Chris Baird takes the indirect free kick.

45:58

Effort from inside the six-yard box by Dean Shiels goes wide right of the goal.

45:01

The referee gets the second half started.

45:01 Substitution

Substitution (Northern Ireland) makes a substitution, with Jamie Ward coming on for Chris Brunt.

45:01 Substitution

Substitution Roy Carroll leaves the field to be replaced by Lee Camp.

45:01 Substitution

Substitution (Finland) makes a substitution, with Riku Riski coming on for Teemu Pukki.

45:00 +1:11 Half time

Half Time The ref blows to end the first period.

45:00 +0:03

Craig Cathcart gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Njazi Kuqi. Direct free kick taken by Roman Eremenko.

41:56

The ball is delivered by Chris Brunt.

41:09

The assistant referee signals for offside against Dean Shiels. Indirect free kick taken by Niklas Moisander.

38:18

Shot by Njazi Kuqi from 18 yards. Blocked by Gareth McAuley. Alexei Eremenko takes a outswinging corner from the right by-line played to the near post, Dean Shiels manages to make a clearance.

34:40

Teemu Pukki takes a shot. Craig Cathcart gets a block in.

30:02

Njazi Kuqi takes a shot. Lee Hodson gets a block in. Corner from left by-line taken by Alexei Eremenko.

23:50 Goal scored

Goal! - Teemu Pukki - N Ireland 2 - 2 Finland Teemu Pukki grabs a goal from inside the penalty area to the bottom right corner of the goal. Northern Ireland 2-2 Finland.

23:05

Centre by Kari Arkivuo, blocked by Gareth McAuley.

21:32

The assist for the goal came from Kari Arkivuo.

21:32 Goal scored

Goal! - Tim Sparv - N Ireland 2 - 1 Finland Tim Sparv fires in a goal from inside the box to the top left corner of the goal. Northern Ireland 2-1 Finland.

21:30

Kari Arkivuo sends in a cross,

20:34

Steven Davis challenges Alexei Eremenko unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Alexei Eremenko.

18:35

Assist by Dean Shiels.

18:35 Goal scored

Goal! - Kyle Lafferty - N Ireland 2 - 0 Finland Goal scored by Kyle Lafferty from close range to the bottom left corner of the goal. Northern Ireland 2-0 Finland.

18:32

Dean Shiels produces a cross,

17:45

Centre by Lee Hodson, save made by Niki Maenpaa.

16:10

The offside flag is raised against Kyle Lafferty. Niklas Moisander restarts play with the free kick.

12:36

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Kasper Hamalainen by Shane Ferguson. Niki Maenpaa takes the indirect free kick.

12:08

Corner taken right-footed by Steven Davis to the near post, clearance made by Kari Arkivuo.

10:33

Chris Baird concedes a free kick for a foul on Roman Eremenko. Direct free kick taken by Kari Arkivuo.

8:35

Lee Hodson fouled by Tim Sparv, the ref awards a free kick. Lee Hodson takes the direct free kick.

6:33

Assist by Dean Shiels.

6:33 Goal scored

Goal! - Shane Ferguson - N Ireland 1 - 0 Finland Shane Ferguson gets on the score sheet with a goal from just inside the area to the top left corner of the goal. Northern Ireland 1-0 Finland.

3:08

Free kick awarded for a foul by Kasper Hamalainen on Roy Carroll. Roy Carroll restarts play with the free kick.

2:28

Corner taken by Alexei Eremenko from the left by-line played to the near post, Roy Carroll makes a save.

1:01

Kasper Hamalainen takes a shot. Blocked by Chris Baird.

0:28

The offside flag is raised against Kyle Lafferty. Free kick taken by Niki Maenpaa.

0:00

The match gets underway.

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