sport

Ambrose: Virgil deserves call

Efe Ambrose believes fellow Celtic centre-back Virgil van Dijk should be joining him at the World Cup this summer.

The Hoops defender helped Nigeria book their place at Brazil 2014 and is convinced his Dutch team-mate has time to break into coach Louis van Gaal's squad.

Van Dijk has caught the eye of a number of top clubs, including Liverpool, Manchester United and Manchester City, since his 2.6million move from FC Groningen last June.

The duo have been instrumental in Celtic's run of 12 successive clean sheets in the league, dating back to November of last year, and hope to help keeper Fraser Forster set a new Scottish record against Hearts on Saturday.

Should Forster keep the Jambos out for the first 31 minutes, he will surpass the mark set by Aberdeen keeper Bobby Clark 43 years ago, and Ambrose is convinced he too should be on the plane to Rio with England.

"I would be very disappointed if Virgil didn't make it to the World Cup finals," said Ambrose, who joined Celtic from Israeli side Ashdod in the summer of 2012.

"Virgil is a great player and I am certain Holland really need his talent. He has every quality to play at the World Cup finals. The way he has been playing recently makes it unimaginable that he could not make their pre-World Cup squad.

"And I also think Fraser should be there with England. He is different class and week in, week out he's been doing it for Celtic and should definitely be given his chance.

"We have played against the best in the Champions League and he has kept Celtic going. It wouldn't matter where he is playing - Scotland, England or Germany - what he is doing is really special."

Watch Celtic take on Hearts at Tynecastle live on Sky Sports 2HD from 12.30pm this Saturday.