IT WAS great to keep another couple of clean sheets for England against Northern Ireland and Azerbaijan but at the same time, it was also good to have something to do against Azerbaijan. We played reasonably well in both games and it was always a case of when we were going to get the first goal. As soon as the first goal came, we always looked like going on to win comfortably.
IT'S ALL about concentration in these games and that's a huge part of a goalkeeper's performance anyway, perhaps even more so at international level. We can go for 15, 20 minutes sometimes without even touching the ball, let alone having it in your hands. It's all about being ready to make the save when called upon and thankfully that was the case against Azerbaijan. It was an important time to make a save and nice to show everyone what I can do. It's great to play, to be honest. I've been around the international scene for a while now and to get my reward and play the games, I'm thoroughly enjoying it.
ENGLAND are looking in pretty good shape to qualify for the World Cup but Poland are pushing us all the way. We're right up at the top of the group, Poland are right behind us so we have to keep it going.
OBVIOUSLY, playing for England gives me a lift whern I get back to Spurs. Any good performance puts you on a high and confidence plays such a big part in goalkeeping. You see goalkeeper's going through patches and it happens to everyone but when you are playing well, it seems to come easy.
AS FOR my own form, I think this is the best season I've had. Form will differ throughout the season, you have ups and downs, but I've been reasonably leased with my performances throughout the season. To break into the England team is a big achievement as well and I'm still only 25, so I've still got a lot to learn. That's an old cliche, I know, but hopefully I've got a lot of years ahead of me to get better.
BIRMINGHAM was a game we were looking to win. We've some tough games coming up in the next couple of weeks and we wanted the three points. We've now three big games but we've come so far this season, we now want to take something from those games, starting with Newcastle on Sunday. We're playing well, moving the ball, passing the ball and we're confident. We're not frightened of playing anyone at the moment and the bigger the game, the better we seem to play as well.
WE'VE played Newcastle twice this season - beat them once and battered them in the FA Cup. We were all disappointed that day and Shay Given kept them in the game. Shay is a very good goalkeeper, very agile and an established international. I've always been impressed with him. Sunday will be a very difficult game and they are a good team, but they have three suspensions, two in midfield and hopefully we can take advantage.
I'M SURE Newcastle will be delighted Alan Shearer has decided to stay on another season. His record speaks for itself. He scores goals for fun and has done wherever he's played, Newcastle, Blackburn or England. He's a player to fear simply because he can stick the ball past you. I haven't got too bad a record against him though. There was a time at Leeds where I played three or four times and he didn't score. I think he scored once against me at Leeds. You have to be aware of him for 90 minutes. He's a great finisher, a proven track record and give him half a chance and he'll take it.