Kuszczak determined to nail No.1 spot

Manchester United goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak admits he always believed he would get his chance at Old Trafford and is determined to prove he is more than capable of replacing Edwin van der Sar.

The 27-year-old is enjoying a rare run in the first-team having fallen down the pecking order in recent times behind Ben Foster and veteran Van der Sar.

The Dutchman is widely expected to hang up his gloves at the end of the season, leaving the No.1 position up for grabs.

Meanwhile, manager Sir Alex Ferguson has continually been linked with a move for a possible replacement during the January transfer window.

But having made his sixth consecutive start in the midweek victory against Wolves, Kuszczak is keen to impress and establish himself as United’s first-choice between the sticks.

“I am still making some small mistakes, which I am not happy with,” he told the Manchester Evening News.

“I try to be honest about my performances. OK, I didn’t concede any goals against Wolves but I made some mistakes which could have cost us a goal. Thankfully they didn’t.

“I am enjoying playing regularly. Then you can do something with your performance.

“Playing for Manchester United is fantastic. Even when I have had the hard times, when I did not play, that was always my ambition.”

Kuszczak has found his chances limited since arriving from West Bromwich Albion and has made just 23 league appearances since joining the Red Devils, initially on loan in 2006.

The Pole, however, insists he never gave up hope of being given a chance on the Premier League stage and is intent on taking the latest opportunity with both hands.

“I never started thinking the chance wouldn’t come for me. Now it is my time to play regularly and I want to do it for a long time.

“I have to play well and keep clean sheets. I have to make as few mistakes as I can.”

Ferguson’s side have been decimated by injuries this season and were forced to field a makeshift defence featuring three midfielders in their recent Champions League win over Wolfsburg.

Kuszczak has managed to keep three shutouts in his previous six outings, but admits his task has been made even more difficult by the constant upheaval forced upon the United rearguard.

“It is difficult to keep clean sheets because the level of the Premier League is so high and we have to keep changing the defence around,” he added.

“It can be confusing but we don’t have enough time to gel, although they played well on Tuesday against Wolves.”


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