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Forster may leave Celtic to boost England chances

ESPN staff
May 28, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Fraser Forster is disappointed not to be part of the latest England squad © Getty Images
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Fraser Forster has hinted that he may be forced to leave Celtic in an attempt to strengthen his international prospects ahead of the World Cup in Brazil next year.

After enjoying a league and cup double success in his third season at Parkhead, he originally joined the side on loan from former club Newcastle in 2010, before Celtic struck a permanent deal with the Magpies for a fee in the region of £2 million in 2012.

Following more stellar form, Roy Hodgson rewarded him with a call up to the England squad in October and again in March for the World Cup Qualifiers against San Marino and Montenegro.

Unable to make it off the bench, he was left out of the squad for upcoming friendlies against the Republic of Ireland and Brazil, with the 25-year-old now suggesting his time at Celtic may be coming to an end as he attempts to consolidate his position with the national team.

"It's a tough one," he told the Evening Chronicle. "Celtic have been fantastic for me and this season couldn't have gone much better, both personally and as a team.

"But it's disappointing not to be in this England squad. I've got to be looking towards the World Cup next year and trying to be on that plane. So I'll just have to do whatever is necessary to make that squad. I've got quite a while left on my contract here, and if we can get through the Champions League qualifiers - which will be tough - to get in the group stage again would be something special. We'll just have to wait and see.

"I didn't get an explanation as to why I was left out this time although I haven't spoken to anyone at England. It's just one of those things. We haven't got that long off in the summer anyway, so you just have to take the positives out of it. I'll get a good rest and come back next season raring to go. My plan is to go away and get some sunshine and relax. It's been a very long season. Was it a body-blow not to be in the squad? Well, yes. That's where you want to be.

He went on to add: "Having had a taste of being in an England squad before and after Christmas, that's what you're aiming for. Once you've been in, you want to be in every time. It's a World Cup year and World Cups in Brazil don't come around very often. That would be something special. I'll just have to do whatever I can to force my way on to that plane."

Admitting to having unfinished business with former club Newcastle, Forster also revealed how much he has enjoyed his time in Scotland thus far. Having also earned rave reviews for his performances in the Champions League this season, Forster is appreciative of the exposure such a competition affords him.

"It's been brilliant at Celtic," he revealed. "It's been a very long season but we've done well on all fronts.

"We wrapped the league up early doors and had this final [Scottish Cup final] to look forward to, so it's nice to get the job done. The exposure from the Champions League this season helped a lot of us. That's where you've got to test yourself against the best players in the world.

"We'll want to do well next year, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. I'm a Newcastle fan and I've got unfinished business there. It was a wrench to leave because it's my hometown club. But it wasn't meant to be."

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