The Wokingham Paper

WORLD CUP: Chris Gunter backs Reading FC team-mate Jon Dadi Bodvarsson to cause more shocks with Iceland

Jon Dadi Bodvarsson is outnumbered
Jon Dadi Bodvarsson is in Russia with Iceland

Chris Gunter believes Jon Dadi Bodvarsson and Iceland can cause more surprises at this summer’s World Cup.

The tournament gets underway on Thursday before Bodvarsson, Reading’s only participant, takes to the field against Argentina Saturday afternoon (2pm).

Iceland are making their World Cup debuts but were one of the big stories of Euro 2016, beating England on their way to the quarter-finals. At the same time, Gunter was part of one of the other main talking points as he reached the semi-finals with Wales.

Chris Gunter did not qualify with Wales

And the defender will be cheering on his club-mate.

“He’s obviously got a very good summer to look forward to,” said Gunter.

“It’s a fantastic achievement for them and for him.

“Hopefully he can go there and do well for himself and I’m sure as a club it’s always nice to say you’ve got a player playing in that sort of tournament.

“Hopefully he does really well and if their last tournament was anything to go by, then it’s going to be a very good one for him.”

Bodvarsson, who is joined in the Iceland squad by former Reading man Gylfi Sigurdsson, will also take on Nigeria and Croatia in Group D.

As for Gunter, his World Cup dreams ended in disappointment by failing to progress out of their qualifying group.

And while the Reading vice-captain would no doubt rather be in Russia, he says he will not spend all his time off glued to the television.

“I’ll obviously watch games but I wouldn’t plan my summer around it,” said the Welshman.

“I need to get on holiday but of course you’ll watch games when you can.

“We’d loved to have been there but I think we’ve moved on from that now and hopefully we can continue to grow and as soon as next season starts we’ve got some competitive games to begin with as well.

“I still think it’s an exciting time and we’re in a real good place as a nation.”


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