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Paddy Davitt, Norwich City Writer
Monday, January 27, 2014
John Ruddy is convinced Nathan Redmond is good enough to join him on the plane to Brazil for the World Cup finals this summer.
Norwich City’s number one knows he faces his own personal battle with the likes of Celtic’s former Canaries’ loanee Fraser Forster to clinch a spot in Roy Hodgson’s final England squad, but Ruddy is not ruling out a late run from his young Canaries’ team-mate Redmond.
Theo Walcott’s cruciate ligament injury has opened the door for a wide midfielder and Three Lions’ boss Hodgson recently singled out the likes of Redmond and Liverpool’s Raheem Sterling as ones to watch in the future.
Ruddy insists the England Under-21 international can put himself in the frame with a strong finish to the Canaries’ Premier League season.
“I think he has more of a chance now that Theo is out,” said Ruddy. “He probably doesn’t get the recognition he deserves, but I know when he is in the starting XI he always adds that extra dimension to our team. Losing Theo is a massive blow, but it is a chance for someone else to come in and fill his boots whether as a starter or a squad player, and what an opportunity for someone, whether Nathan or someone else. From a selfish point of view I hope it is him.”
Redmond has made 24 appearances for the Canaries this season following his summer move from Birmingham. The 19-year-old’s last Premier League start came in the New Year’s Day draw at Crystal Palace. He was reportedly the subject of a transfer enquiry from Swansea City in recent days which was rejected by the Canaries. Redmond spurned the Swans’ advances during the close season to link up again with his former mentor Chris Hughton.