Defender recently left for France with the Northern Ireland squadFleetwood Town caught up with defender Conor McLaughlin before he jetted off to France with the Northern Ireland squad for their EURO 2016 campaign.
In a two part interview with the Club’s website, McLaughlin discusses his season with Town as well as his ambitions with the Green and White Army out on the continent this summer.
The right back has been a mainstay in Fleetwood’s side for the past few years, and his performances on the Fylde Coast have earned him international recognition.
McLaughlin was an integral part of Michael O’Neill’s side as they qualified for their first major tournament in 30 years last October, and will hope for a starting place in France.
Reflecting on the season, he said: “There was a sense of relief first and foremost when we stayed up on the final day a few weeks ago.
“There wasn’t much celebration amongst the players though because we all knew it had been an unsuccessful season on the whole.
“We just wanted to make sure we got the job done and thankfully we managed to do that. It can’t happen again next season and we must improve.
“The lads all wanted to do it a lot earlier than what we did, but we got through it in the end and preserved our status in this division for another season.
“For me personally at Club level this year it hasn’t gone how I wanted it to go. At international level though it’s been unbelievable, and it’s a big summer ahead now.
“I can’t wait to get going. We’ve had a few training camps and have played a few friendlies too, so everyone is ready for the first game now.
“I’m hoping that I’ll be playing in the games and fingers crossed I stay fit throughout the tournament. It’s an unbelievable experience to be involved.
“We’re in a tough group, there’s no doubt about that. It’s the Euro’s though so whichever group we would have ended up in would have been difficult.”
Watch out for the second part of Conor’s interview tomorrow…