BEN Foster is determined to finish the season on a high for Albion after fearing his campaign and World Cup dream was over after injury against tomorrow’s visitors to The Hawthorns – Everton (ko 8pm).
The Baggies No.1 has played the last five league games after a four-month lay-off due to a broken bone in his right foot he suffered in August’s goalless Goodison Park draw.
He is counting his blessings the problem did not prove much worse, as he now looks to rediscover the form that won him an England recall last term.
And, after being in touching distance of making the Three Lions’ squad for the 2006 World Cup in Germany, he has his sights set on being on the plane to Brazil for his first-ever major tournament.
“I remember the doctor saying if the pin doesn’t take, and the bone doesn’t knit, then you’re looking at fusing the bone together,” said Foster.
“You’re looking at a year out. To hear that kind of news is quite sobering really.
“It was a real serious injury.
“If it happens to an outfield player it’s really touch and go whether you can keep going.
“The navicular is such an important bone and it takes so much weight through your foot.
“But I’ve gone from worrying a bit - if the operation wasn’t a success and if the pin hadn’t knitted and the bone hadn’t knitted – and now I really am looking forward to the World Cup.
“I just want to push on now and have a good season with West Brom and then go to the World Cup."
"It is seven years next month Foster made his England debut against now-World and European champions Spain.
And at the age of 30, he admits this summer could be one of his last chances to feature at a major finals.
“I’ve never done one – that’s why I want to go." he added.
“I’m 30 years old and I’ve never been to a major tournament.
“I’ve been fourth choice and back-up goalkeeper.
“I remember when I was on loan at Watford when I was 23 or 24 and I had to come home from holiday with the missus to join up with the squad to be back-up goalkeeper.
“I was buzzing so much just to be there.
“We had [Scott] Carson, [Paul] Robinson, [David] James and Sven [Goran Eriksson] was in charge.
“The season had just finished, we had just won promotion with Watford, I joined up with the team as fourth goalkeeper, just in case anyone got injured.
“Nobody did; I trained with the team for ten days and then went back on holiday; the lads went onto Germany.
“It wasn’t nice but it was kind of expected. You know when you are fourth choice there is a chance you won’t be going.
“This time I want to go - it’s as simple as that.
“Hopefully it will be my first major tournament - and I want to see what it’s all about.”