London: World No 4 golfer Rory McIlroy paid tribute to the Northern Ireland football team after they fell to Wales in the last 16 at Euro 2016 on Saturday.
Appearing at their first major tournament in 30 years, Michael O'Neill's side were beaten in the 75th minute at Parc des Princes in Paris when defender Gareth McAuley turned a cross from Gareth Bale into his own net.
"You did us all proud @NorthernIreland," McIlroy wrote on his Twitter account. "It's only the beginning, let's get to the World Cup in 2018."
McIlroy, a prominent Northern Ireland fan, attended their 1-0 group-stage defeat by Germany at the same stadium.