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Gudmundsson Plans To Spread The Joy

Iceland star aims to bring feel-good factor to Turf Moor after World Cup heroics

12 October 2017

Johann Berg Gudmundsson is hoping to bring a bit of Iceland’s World Cup magic back with him to Turf Moor.

Gudmundsson has enjoyed a memorable few days as part of the Iceland squad that has reached the World Cup finals for the first time.

The Clarets’ winger scored in each of the two wins – against Turkey and Kosovo – that secured his country’s place in Russia 2018.

And after fulfilling a boyhood dream, Gudmundsson is now intent on doing his bit to help the Clarets continue their flying start to the season – their best in the top tier since 1973 – as they prepare to entertain West Ham on Saturday.

He said: “When I was a kid I watched the Premier League, the Euros and the World Cup.

“I have played in two of them and, hopefully, in the summer I will play in the third.

“It was a massive thing when I was a young kid growing up to think this might happen. Now it has happened, I’m very grateful.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson has been capped 62 times by Iceland

“I did really well in the last few games with Iceland and scored two goals, so my confidence is in good nick and hopefully I can take it into the Premier League.

“It’s been a great few days but now I’m concentrating on playing as many games as I can for Burnley and being fit for the whole season.

“I want to contribute any way I can, whether it’s an assist or a goal, I just want to help the team.

“There’s a lot of competition in the team but I want to play as many games as I can, so I will work every day to go back in the team and when I do I will try to do my best.

“We have started really well. We are sitting nicely in sixth position and we want to keep that form going.

“It starts with West Ham. It’s a tough game. Our away form has been unbelievable. Probably we should have taken a bit more at home, so hopefully that will start again on Saturday.”

Gudmundsson reported back for club duty along with the rest of the Clarets’ international players on Thursday – three days after Iceland celebrated booking their World Cup place.

And the 26-year-old - whose last Premier League start came in Burnley's 1-1 draw at Liverpool in mid-September - now has the chance to add to the success his country enjoyed when knocking out England at the last-16 stage of the 2016 European Championships in France.

Gudmundsson added: “It feels unbelievable. It’s taken me a few days to realise that we are going to the World Cup and I don’t think it will really sink in until we are out in Russia and we see how big it is and what an unbelievable story we have written.

“For Iceland to be at the World Cup is quite magnificent. The smallest nation ever to qualify, so we are in the history books.

“It was a great moment and it was a tough group to go through from as well, so we’ve done a really good job.

“Being at the Euros was an amazing achievement, but being at the World Cup is even better.”

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