Hillsborough

Next Game

Sheff Wed v Norwich

Saturday, 25 October 2014, 15:00

Sky Bet Ch'ship

Carrow Road

Last Game

Norwich 1 - 1 Leeds

Tuesday, 21 October 2014, 19:45

Sky Bet Ch'ship

Ruddy: Hart's still number one

John Ruddy says Joe Hart is England's number one goalkeeper and believes recent criticism of the Manchester City keeper affects England's chances of success.

Last Updated: 11/10/13 at 17:25 Post Comment

John Ruddy (right) believes Joe Hart (left) is England's top keeper

John Ruddy (right) believes Joe Hart (left) is England's top keeper

Norwich goalkeeper Ruddy is one of two understudies to Hart in the squad, alongside Celtic's Fraser Forster, for the crucial World Cup qualifiers with Montenegro and Poland.

But Ruddy, whose single England appearance to date came in a friendly win over Italy, for now has no pretensions on the England goalkeeper jersey he believes Hart fully deserves.

"Joe's the England number one. Rightly so," Ruddy said. "The way he's performed over the last few years he's deserved it and he's never let England down.

"I've been in situations before when people are questioning you. It's never nice.

"Without being too patronising, I felt sorry for him.

"He doesn't warrant that sort of attention. He's a top-drawer goalkeeper, one of the best in the world without a shadow of a doubt.

"It's the way the media is - you build people up so far and then chop their legs away when they get too high.

"Unfortunately that's the way the English media goes. Until that stops we might struggle to go anywhere in competitions."

Nevertheless, Ruddy believes Hart, like any top-level goalkeeper, has the mental resilience to put errors behind him.

"Nine times out of 10 a keeper makes a mistake, the ball goes in the back of the net," Ruddy said.

"It's a tough world but every keeper is mentally strong enough to deal with that.

"We're a strange bunch, but you have to be. The self-confidence and self-belief that you have as an individual has to be right up there."

Ruddy insists there are plenty of goalkeepers pushing Hart for his position, should England boss Roy Hodgson opt to change.

The 26-year-old said: "There's plenty of talent around. Joe knows that. Joe sets himself very high standards.

"I'm looking forward to working with him for the rest of the week.

"I'm happy to be involved in the squad and I'm happy to be putting pressure on Joe. He knows there's myself, there's Fraser, there's Ben (Foster), there's Jack (Butland), (and) Robert Green's kept eight clean sheets in a row - you don't do that if you're a bad keeper."

Norwich and England goalkeeping coach Dave Watson could have his work cut out this week, with Hart and Ruddy, who did not have his best day in the 3-1 loss to Chelsea at Carrow Road.

At 1-1, Norwich were pressing forward late on when Chelsea broke from a corner and Hazard pounced on a poor Alex Tettey touch to shoot through Ruddy before Willian capped the triumph.

"I'm obviously disappointed to concede a goal, but it would've been a very good save if I'd have been able to get down to it," Ruddy said.

"He (Hazard) has had the whole goal to aim at and he's put it in the most awkward position for a goalkeeper.

"Looking back I probably would've gone with the leg, but these are split-second decisions you have to make and with the power he put on it it's always going to be difficult to stop it."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e doesn't need a caoch. He needs a bus. A bloody big one, that he can park across the goal line. And when he gets one, he can do us a favour and let us know where we can buy one from as well.

HarryBoulton
Rodgers: No defence coach

Y

ou are wrong Per, thats the right way the play. Its everyone elses' fault that it doesnt work.

delboy
Mertesacker urges style change

A

s it's panto season coming soon, let me be the first Oh yes you do

munchie
Rodgers: No defence coach

Footer 365

Sky sources: Mike Ashley proposes an emergency loan offer to Rangers

Sky Sports understands that Mike Ashley is proposing an emergency loan offer to Rangers.

Europa League: Everton investigating trouble in Lille before Thursday's match

Everton will work with Merseyside and French police to establish the facts about Thursday's crowd trouble in Lille.

Premier League: Tottenham to commemorate Bill Nicholson at Sunday's game against Newcastle

Tottenham will commemorate Bill Nicholson by bathing White Hart Lane in white when they face Newcastle on Sunday.

Mail Box

'Goals Like That Can Make You Pregnant'

Those being sniffy about Erik Lamela's rabona are given short shrift in the afternoon mailbox, where criticism of Brendan Rodgers is smashed out of the park...

Does David De Gea Need Competition?

It would certainly be a good idea to give Victor Valdes a contract, while we have more mails on Brendan Rodgers, Arsene Wenger, the rabona and mailbox gripes...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property