Begovic could wreck Ronaldo's dream

IPSWICH Town keeper Asmir Begovic could end up denying Cristiano Ronaldo an appearance at next year's World Cup!

Carl Marston

By Carl Marston

IPSWICH Town keeper Asmir Begovic could end up denying Cristiano Ronaldo an appearance at next year's World Cup!

Begovic has been included in the Bosnia-Herzegovina squad to face star-studded Portugal in a World Cup play-off later this month, with the winners bound for South Africa next summer.

Town's 6ft 5ins custodian, who is on loan from Portsmouth until January, made his international debut as a late substitute in the win over Estonia last month, a result which secured Bosnia-Herzegovina's place as runners-up behind group winners Spain.

Now Begovic will be hoping to feature against Portugal in the two-legged play-off, and stop everything that Ronaldo and co. can throw at him. The first leg is in Lisbon on November 14, with the return leg at Zenico just four days later.

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There are no Championship fixtures during this period, due to the fortnight's break for internationals, so Begovic will not miss any Ipswich games.

Begovic confirmed: “We know we have a tough draw, but we feel we can give anyone a good game and over two legs you never know what will happen.”

The 22-year-old keeper, who was actually born in Canada and played for the Canadian under-20 team, has caught the eye since his loan switch from Pompey.

He has conceded just three goals in his four appearances, and is yet to finish on the losing team. Furthermore, he was Town's man-of-the-match in Saturday's crunch 1-0 win over Derby County.

After that match Begovic, who made his only two appearances for Portsmouth in the final two Premier League games of last season, due to a shoulder injury to first choice David James, has revealed that he would be prepared to extend his loan spell at Portman Road until the end of the campaign.

“I wouldn't go back (to Portsmouth) in January unless there was a good reason,” insisted Begovic.

“I am very much enjoying life here with Ipswich Town. They are a great club and the chance to play regular first team football is fantastic.

“Everything is possible, and I don't know what will happen. I don't like to look too far ahead and at the moment I am concentrating on the job in hand - helping lift Ipswich up the table.”

To date, Town have had three draws and a win with Begovic in goal. He is set to make his fifth appearance at fellow strugglers Reading this Saturday.

After the trip to the Madesjki Stadium, Town have a two-week break before entertaining Sheffield Wednesday on November 21.

By then, Begovic will hope to have booked his place on the plane to the World Cup Finals in South Africa!

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