McCarthy: No Doubt Bart Deserves Poland Call
Friday, 9th Mar 2018 14:45
Town boss Mick McCarthy says keeper Bartosz Bialkowski has had a smile on his face from ear to ear since learning of his first ever call into the Polish national squad, news which was confirmed this morning.
McCarthy says he remembers receiving his first call from the Republic of Ireland and what it meant to him.
“It’s a long time ago, but I do remember it. Eoin Hand ringing me at Manchester City and telling me I was going to be called up and how thrilled I was,” he recalled.
“It was great news and I loved it and Bart’s had a smile on his face from ear to ear since yesterday.
“I got the call from his coach while I was out on the training ground, I was watching training yesterday and I was delighted for him.
“Who knows? He’s got a bit of momentum. Now he’s got in the squad, maybe he’ll travel to the World Cup, I sincerely hope he does. And when he’s there, he might play.”
McCarthy says the 30-year-old’s call-up is fully warranted: “He deserves it from the performances he’s produced here, without a doubt.
“I don’t know what the Polish keepers are, they might be somebody saying that they deserve it.
“But if you’re judging on what we’ve seen of him here, he’s been head and shoulders one of the best keepers in the league for the last two seasons. He does deserve his call-up.”
McCarthy says Bialkowski has progressed over the last couple of seasons having become the firm first choice ahead of Dean Gerken.
“I think it’s quite obvious the fact that he’s been playing all the time, that’s how much he’s come on,” McCarthy continued.
“It got to a stage where if Bart was playing or Gerks was playing, if they played and they got in the team they stayed in the team and the other one would play in the cup games.
“And it always took one of them to get injured or something to happen for the other one to get in the team.
“I guess thankfully for Bart he’s maintained his fitness, nothing’s happened to him. He had a bereavement when he came of the team one time.
“And he’s just stayed there despite Gerks whenever he’s come in, he’s played in the cup games or any time he’s had to play, he’s been great. But Bart’s been exceptional.”
Even if the former Southampton and Notts County man doesn’t make the cut for Russia in the summer, he will still only be 32 when the Euros come around in two years’ time and he could have a chance of being involved then.
“Yes, he has, that’s a bonus for him,” the Blues boss added. “You look at him, he’s really slim and slender and athletic, he’ll probably play until he’s 40, Bart.
“But I’m sure he’d like to get in this one, a World Cup in Russia. And if he’s in this one, once you get in the squads, sometimes it’s almost difficult to get out of it, you’ve got to do a lot wrong once you’ve been in and you’ve travelled, other people beneath you have got a lot to do to knock you out of the squad.”
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