Pundits Lee Dixon and Ian Wright have both told ITV's UEFA Nations League Highlights show that they think Kyle Lafferty's conduct with Northern Ireland was unacceptable.
Having been beaten 2-1 by Bosnia and Herzegovina at Windsor Park in their last UEFA Nations League clash, Northern Ireland headed to Vienna looking for a better result against Austria.
However, Michael O'Neill's side drew a blank in front of goal without absent striker Lafferty, and they ended up losing to a second half goal at the Ernst Happel Stadion.
West Ham United forward Marko Arnautovic raced clear with 20 minutes to play and finished past Bailey Peacock-Farrell, scoring the only goal of the game.
With two defeats in two, Northern Ireland are now facing relegation in the UEFA Nations League, and there is much for O'Neill to consider ahead otheir next internationals.
One of the big problems heading into the game was the situation surrounding Rangers striker Lafferty, as he pulled out of the squad at midnight last Sunday citing problems with an Achilles injury.
Boss O'Neill was thoroughly disappointed to lose his main goal threat, and the way he withdrew from the squad has left a sour taste for many, with tow pundits slamming him.
Lee Dixon and Ian Wright have both told ITV's UEFA Nations League Highlights show that they think Lafferty's actions were wrong, with Wright going particularly strongly on the matter, suggesting that his behaviour was 'disgraceful' and 'terribly unprofessional' by pulling out so late in the day; quite literally.
“It’s not ideal,” said Dixon. “If we know all the facts then fine, that he’s managing his Achilles but then he’s playing for Rangers. He’s got to make a decision, does he want to play? If he doesn’t want to play then fine, but let the manager know a little bit earlier than that.”
“You should still turn up. You can’t phone up at 12 o’clock to the manager and upset the preparations like that. He knew exactly what he was doing, I think it’s disgraceful behaviour really. I think that once the squad is named, say ‘listen, I’m trying to manage my Achilles, I don’t think I’ll be fit enough’. Don’t ring at 12 o’clock at night, causing problem like that - I think it’s terribly unprofessional of him,” added Wright.
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