Faroe Islands frustrate Northern Ireland

Faroe Islands, guided by their Irish coach Brian Kerr, held Northern Ireland to a shock 1-1 draw in a Euro 2012 Group C qualifier in Toftir on Tuesday just four days after the Irish drew with Italy in Belfast.

The unheralded Faroes took the lead on the hour when Christian Lamhauge Holst twisted and turned before firing a low shot past Maik Taylor to stun Nigel Worthington's side.

However, 16 minutes later Kyle Lafferty spared Northern Ireland's blushes with an accurate strike from just inside the area that clipped the post on its way into the net.

Kerr, a former Ireland manager, said the result was a fair reflection of his side's dogged efforts in the Svangaskard stadium, which is surrounded by rolling green hills.

"I think we at least deserved a point. I've had a couple of good days with the Faroes. Last year when we beat Lithuania was a great day," he told Sky Sports.

"Being from Ireland, with my parents from Belfast, it was a good day for me," added Kerr, who took over the Faroes job in April last year.

His opposite number Worthington agreed it was a fair result and blamed his players for taking the Faroes too lightly.

"There was complacency in the back of their minds. We deserved it (being held to a draw)," he told Sky Sports. "If you don't prepare mentally and individually that's what happens."

The Faroes rarely record shock results. Their biggest upset was a 1-0 win over Austria during Euro 1992 qualifying, when they also took a point off Northern Ireland, while lLast September they beat Lithuania 2-1 in a World Cup qualifier.

Tuesday's result was a blow to Northern Ireland's Euro 2012 qualifying chances and they stay in third place with five points behind Italy (seven) and Estonia (six) after three matches.

The Faroes remain rooted to the bottom of the standings after picking up their first point of the campaign.