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Forster backed to impress

New England goalkeeper Fraser Forster is being backed to perform on the international stage as he will not be overawed by the occasion.

Last Updated: 07/11/13 at 20:45 Post Comment

Fraser Forster: Backed to perform on the international stage

Fraser Forster: Backed to perform on the international stage

That was the message from his former manager Paul Lambert following Celtic number one Forster's inclusion in England boss Roy Hodgson's squad for the forthcoming friendlies against Chile and Germany.

Hodgson has confirmed Joe Hart will start one of the matches, despite his recent demotion to the Manchester City bench under manager Manuel Pellegrini, with Forster and Norwich's John Ruddy both likely to be given game time.

Should Forster be handed his opportunity, Aston Villa manager Lambert believes the 25-year-old will step up to the plate.

Forster helped Norwich win the League One title in 2009-10 after he was signed by Lambert on a season-long loan from Newcastle.

Lambert said: "Fraser was brilliant, fantastic. He made some amazing saves that season.

"When his loan was up I tried to bring him back to Norwich permanently, but couldn't do it, we couldn't afford him.

"Then Lenny (Celtic manager Neil Lennon) phoned me and asked me what I thought, and I said 'Take him. He'll be great for you'.

"I'm delighted for him because he is a top goalkeeper and the thing about him is he has made saves in big games."

Given the number of European games Celtic have been involved in since Forster joined the club in 2010, initially on loan for two seasons prior to a £2.5million move from the Magpies in July last year, Lambert feels Forster has served an ideal apprenticeship for England.

"There's no doubt if he can perform at the level he has at Celtic, in big games and in that atmosphere, nothing will faze him. Nothing," added Lambert.

"On a European night at Parkhead the atmosphere is great and if you can also perform at places likes the Nou Camp, in Milan, then he won't be bothered.

"If he gets an opportunity then all Fraser has to do is perform and not change anything he does at Parkhead."

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