1. ITV Report

Ruddy ready for England duty

Goalkeeper John Ruddy flies the flag for club and country Photo: ITV Anglia

Norwich City goalkeeper John Ruddy says he’s excited about being involved in England’s bid for glory at the European Championships - and also thanked the FA for allowing his wedding to go ahead as planned.

The 25 year old shot-stopper is due to get married when England play the second of their warm-up games against Belgium. He will be released ahead of the friendly before re-joining the squad for Euro 2012.

Ruddy said ‘I’m very, very grateful that they’ve allowed me the opportunity to get married as planned. There’s a lot of organisation that has gone into it by myself and my partner Laura.

‘We’re absolutely over ther moon that it can still go ahead and I’m very, very grateful to both the FA and to Roy Hogdson for allowing that to happen’.

Ruddy joins Manchester City’s Joe Hart and former Norwich goalkeeper Robert Green in the 23 man squad, but admits he’s had little time to learn more about England’s group opponents at the Euros since his call-up - France, Ukraine and Sweden.

‘It’s been a very hectic week and I’m just taking it step by step’. Ruddy added. ‘I’m joining up on Wednesday so I’m really looking forward to that, just getting a few training sessions under my belt.

‘Then we’ve got the game in Norway and then after that my attentions then turn to my wedding, which is the week after, so I very excited about that. After that, it’s all focussed on the Euros and preparing in the right manner and making sure that I can bring something to the squad to help them achieve what everyone in England wants to do and that’s win the tournament.

‘It’s a tremendous honour for myself and my family to be included in not just an England squad but a European Championship England squad. And I think it’s a testament to everyone at Norwich that has helped me along the way, and those earlier in my career to get me to this point and I’m just grateful for the opportunity’.

Ruddy was notified by England goalkeeping coach Ray Clemence the day after Norwich completed their Premier League campaign by beating Aston Villa 2-0.

‘I’ve said all along that we haven’t had as many clean sheets as we deserved but to finish with one was a real bonus for myself and for the team’ Ruddy added. ‘It was a terrific performance we put in against Aston Villa as well and it just topped the season off lovely’.

But Ruddy also had sympathy with Norwich teammate Grant Holt, who didn’t make the squad.

‘If you’re looking at statistics and records he had to have been included’ said Ruddy. ‘He scored seventeen goals, he was the second highest English goalscorer behind Wayne Rooney. But it’s not to be.

‘He won’t let that get him down and he’ll come back next year and try and score even more goals and prove his worth not just for Norwich but for his country as well’. **