Evans: Teams will fear Northern Ireland

Xavi scores free-kick screamer in AFC Champions League

Northern Ireland centre-back Jonny Evans believes the other teams involved in the World Cup play-offs will be hoping to avoid being drawn against them.

The Green and White Army qualified for the play-offs after finishing second in Group C, behind Germany, and could face the likes of Italy, Croatia, or Portugal.

However, Evans is confident about his side's chance of qualifying for the World Cup and is convinced that other teams won't be keen to face them.

"We're a real hard-working team, we defend really well as a unit, we all work hard for each other and that's not nice to play against," said the West Brom defender, as quoted by Sky Sports.

"We've got a good defensive record throughout the campaign, we're disappointed conceding a goal (against Norway), it would have been nice to have the eight clean sheets.

"I think a lot of teams will fear us. Every team that plays us talks about our strength on set pieces and being hard to break down.

"I think there's a fine balance between underestimating and being fearful. I think teams will cover all aspects and will look at us and see we are good at set pieces – but they haven't been able to deal with it up until now, and that's just one aspect of our game, they can't handle us on set plays."