Burnley striker Paterson ready to consider Northern Ireland future
MARTIN Paterson has revealed he will review his international career after Northern Ireland’s World Cup qualifier with Portugal.
The 25-year-old has been recalled to Michael O'Neill’s squad after missing their double header against Russia and Luxembourg last month through a hamstring injury.
Although Paterson made his comeback in the last league game before the break as a half-time substitute against Brighton, after recovering from a Grade I muscle tear, he was allowed to spend the next fortnight with his club to focus on his fitness.
He is set to be involved for Northern Ireland again in Porto on October 16.
But the striker, who has 14 caps and one goal for his country, admitted he will give careful thought to his international future afterwards, in order to get the best out of his club career after three injury ravaged seasons.
“It’s something I will have to think long and hard about and talk about with my family,” said Paterson.
“I have to keep fit. Every game does take a lot out of me and my legs.
“The most important thing is to keep fit and play as many games as I can for my club. If I’m not doing that then I'm not doing my job.”
Paterson’s Turf Moor team-mates Sam Vokes and David Edgar will also be away on international duty after today's game at Crystal Palace.
Striker Vokes retains his place in the Wales squad for a crunch game against Scotland and a trip to Croatia. Chris Coleman’s men are without a point in Group A.
Defender Edgar flies out to Canada after the trip to Selhurst Park to prepare for games against Cuba and Honduras, which will decide whether the Canucks make it through to the next phase of qualifying for Brazil 2014.
Canada won 1-0 at home to Panama but lost the return fixture 2-0 last month.
After playing in all bar two of Burnley’s 61 games in his first season with the club, scoring 19 goals as the Clarets won promotion via the play-offs, Paterson has been dogged by a succession of knee, groin and hamstring problems.
He played just 27 times in the Premier League season, as a result of an injury he sustained in a League Cup game at Barnsley. He was limited to 14 appearances in 2010/11, and played in 15 league and cup games last season, plus one international match.