Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Taylor leaps to defence of Boruc

Northern Ireland goalkeeper Maik Taylor believes Artur Boruc deserves more respect.

Boruc was dropped by Poland coach Leo Beenhakker following the 3-2 defeat in a World Cup qualifier at Windsor Park in March.

Michal Zewlakow scored a bizarre own goal when the Celtic goalkeeper let his back pass go under his foot and into the net.

Boruc was distraught but Taylor leapt to his defence as the teams prepared to meet tomorrow in the return match in Chorzow.

"He is a top-drawer goalkeeper, no question about that, and he will look to bounce back in this game," said the Birmingham keeper who turned 38 today.

"I really felt for him after the match because I have been in similar situations myself.

"People keep saying it was his mistake, but in my mind it was a freak.

"Once you cock your foot and go to kick the ball, if it bobbles there is absolutely nothing you can do about it.

"He was unlucky. I had struggled in the first half to deal with back passes - on in particular which shinned out for a corner.

"We had said before the game to put the back passes to the side of the goal so the worst case scenario would be conceding a corner."

Northern Ireland would go top of Group Three if they complete the double over Poland and Slovakia lose to the Czech Republic.

Boruc will come face to face again with referee Manuel Mejuto Gonzalez as FIFA have named the controversial Spanish official in charge of the match.

Gonzalez incensed Boruc last week when he awarded Eduardo a penalty off the goalkeeper in Arsenal's victory against Celtic in a Champions League qualifier.

The Croatian was later handed a two-match European ban by UEFA for simulation.

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