Colombian Izquierdo completes trio of Albion players set for World Cup

Jose Izquierdo. Picture by PW Sporting Photography
Jose Izquierdo. Picture by PW Sporting Photography

Jose Izquierdo is on the Columbia World Cup plane and completes a trio of Brighton & Hove Albion players that are going to Russia.

The winger has been included in his countries 23-man squad that was announced today to compete at the tournament this summer.

It is the first time that the 25-year-old has been taken to a World Cup.

He came off the bench at half-time for Colombia on Friday and impressed against Egypt in a 0-0 draw in Italy.

Albion boss Chris Hughton did not pick the wideman for their final Premier League game of the season against Liverpool due to a slight injury.

At the time, Hughton was confident the Colombian would make a recovery and said: "We are hoping he will go away with Columbia in the World Cup so we weren't prepared to take a risk.

"It would have been a risk. But not only him - in every game, depending on the injury - we wouldn't take a risk with any player."

Seagulls' summer signing Leon Balogun is also traveling to the competition for the very first time.

He has been selected in the Nigera squad which had already been announced.

Albion supporters got their first glimpse of the defender as he playerd the first half in their 2-1 defeat against England at Wembley Stadium on Saturday evening.

Australian goalkeeper Mathew Ryan will be making second apperance at a World Cup finals, having represented his country in 2014 in Brazil.

The stopper kept a clean sheet for the Socceroos in their 4-0 victory over Czech Republic at the NV Arena in Austria on Friday.