Match ends, Northern Ireland 0, Greece 1.
Northern Ireland’s search for a first Nations League win has now stretched to 11 matches after a deflating home defeat by Greece.
Visiting captain Tasos Bakasetas scored the only goal of a somewhat scrappy game at Windsor Park late in the first half.
Substitute Kyle Lafferty fired just over the crossbar with a well-hit free-kick late on as the hosts came to life in the final 25 minutes after a flat first-half performance.
Ian Baraclough’s men are now away to Cyprus on Sunday in their second League C Group 2 match before their busy schedule takes them to Kosovo on 9 June, then they complete their opening quadruple-header at home to Cyprus on 12 June.
Thursday night’s result made it eight defeats and three draws in the Nations League for Northern Ireland, who are playing in the third tier of the competition for the first time after being relegated.
Baraclough is without a number of senior players for this camp and gave a competitive debut to Fleetwood Town’s Paddy Lane, while Manchester City’s 18-year-old Shea Charles, one of four new call-ups, came on as a late substitute for his senior international debut.
Greece’s decisive goal arrived in the 39th minute when the Northern Ireland midfield failed to track the forward run of visiting captain Bakasetas.
When Dimitris Limnios played the ball inside from the right, Bakasetas had far too much time and space on the edge of the box as he controlled the ball well and planted a fine low strike wide of Bailey Peacock-Farrell and into the far corner.