'Super defender': Some fans hail Arsenal player's 'brilliant' international display last night
Arsenal loanee Daniel Ballard scored his first goal for Northern Ireland on Thursday night.
The 21-year-old may not have played a senior game for the Gunners yet, but he’s becoming a regular for his country.
A year since making his NI debut, Ballard – currently on loan at Millwall – has since clocked up nine caps.
And on Thursday, the Arsenal academy graduate got his nation up and running in Lithuania.
Ballard converted at the back post in the 20th minute following Conor Washington’s superb whipped cross.
The Gunners man’s goal separated the two teams at the break ahead of a livelier second half.
Washington, Shayne Lavery and Paddy McNair also got on the scoresheet for the visitors.
Rolandas Baravykas halved the deficit on 54 minutes but it turned out to be a consolation.
As well as scoring, Ballard was solid at the back, part of a three-man defence that dealt with the opposition brilliantly.
Here is what some fans – of Arsenal and Northern Ireland – were saying on Twitter about Ballard:
Definitely feel like Daniel Ballard is a player to keep an eye on for Arsenal. Very decent young centre back. Good loan at Blackpool last season, currently doing well for Millwall getting plenty of minutes. Now forcing his way into the Northern Ireland first team. @dg_ballard 👏🏼— Ryan (@_RyanAFC) September 2, 2021
A big year for this beast !— طلال 🇵🇸 (@Afc4news2) September 2, 2021
Better than Mari, Kola and Holding— Anil Erdemir (@anil_afc) September 2, 2021
He’ll get one, good that he’s developing in the championship— AJ (@AJ_SR7) September 2, 2021
We should be able to get about 15mil for Daniel Ballard next season— KING👑 (@_IKENNA_) September 2, 2021
Why sell him when we have much worse defenders in the first team squad? Sell them instead— ubermaster (@crypticious) September 3, 2021
Ballard was brilliant , Davis as per usual hope he never retires ! Felt Lewis was good. Take back what I said about Washington, he delivered tonight , lavery didn’t stop. Peacock Farrell again comes up trumps . A very professional win! Bring on the swizz at home !! #gawa— Fitzy (@a_fitz17) September 2, 2021
Daniel Ballard is probably better than Holding and Mari— matt (@igorsteps_) September 2, 2021