Turkish international Muzzy Izzet will be watching Wednesday's international aga
Turkish international Muzzy Izzet will be watching Wednesday's international against England from his sofa at home. But next season he should be back in the Premiership and challenging to play in the return Euro 2004 match in Turkey.
How many Nationwide League players can boast they have played in a World Cup semi-final?
Leicester City's Muzzy Izzet can, coming on for the last 15 minutes for Turkey against Brazil last year and then flying home to an incredible reception where the squad were mobbed by tens of thousands of ecstatic fans.
This season has been a little more low-key however. Izzet has been in the First Division rather than the Premiership and believes that could be a factor in being left out of the Turkish squad to face England on Wednesday.
"I don't think playing in the first division has helped my cause - Ian Walker has been in a similar situation with England," says the 28-year-old midfielder, who grew up in London but qualifies for Turkey through his father.
"To be fair, Turkey have been doing well without me. They have got a lot of players to choose from and I don't know whether or not they have had scouts watching me this year.
"It is frustrating for me not to be included in the squad. But I have had a lot to put up with this season that has taken my mind off it to be honest."
The last line is a reference to the financial problems Leicester have suffered this season with the club going into administration and the players taking wage deferrals.
However, the team's performances on the field have been first-rate. A return to the top flight under Mickey Adams looks a near-certainty and that would put Izzet back in the limelight just in time for the final Euro 2004 qualifier, between Turkey and England on October 11.
Like most people, he believes the results between Turkey and England will determine the outcome of Group Seven - and doesn't think Sven's men will have it easy against a cosmopolitan side that can boast Emre (Inter Milan) Basturk (Bayer Leverkusen), Tugay (Blackburn) and Nihat (Real Sociedad)
"Turkey will give England a tough match. It will be the toughest game that England will have played for a while," he predicts.
"They will be playing against a Turkish team coming off the back of the World Cup and full of confidence.
"They have got top class players who are playing all around Europe. Not just in Turkey, but in England, Spain, Germany and Italy.
"They have got experienced players who have played at the highest level."
Although Izzet won't be at the Stadium of Light, there's no doubt what he will be doing on Wednesday night.
"I will be watching the game at home from the comfort of the sofa," he says.
The return fixture might be a different matter though!