Stamford AFC goalkeeper Paul Bastock selected for Seniors World Cup

Action from Stamford AFC's win over Matlock Town. Photo: Geoff Atton EMN-160103-104549001
Action from Stamford AFC's win over Matlock Town. Photo: Geoff Atton EMN-160103-104549001

Stamford AFC goalkeeper Paul Bastock is preparing to live every footballer’s dream - after being called up to a World Cup squad.

The 45-year-old has been asked to link up with the England side which will travel to Thailand to take part in the Seniors World Cup in June.

“It’s an opportunity of a lifetime, I’m buzzing off it,” Bastock said.

“I’ve been told about players lining up for the National Anthem with a tear in their eye.

“It’s going to be something special that I’ll remember.”

Former Liverpool and Newcastle great Peter Beardsley has also been named in the squad which will compete for the honours against the likes of Australia, New Zealand and Italy in June, while former Boston United players Tim Ryan and Steve Charles have also pulled on the Three Lions shirt over the years.

In fact, Bastock was scouted for the role by Ryan, the current Buxton manager, when his Stamford side met the Bucks earlier this season.

“I’m lucky that I’ve got a family who have always supported my career and they’re right behind me again,” the goalkeeper added.

Bastock - who has represented the England non-league side in the past - is now considering whether to hang up his boots at the end of the campaign.

And if he makes that decision then at least he knows he will be going out in style.

“My place in the team isn’t guaranteed, but I’ll go out there and do my best,” he continued.

“Being there could be the perfect swansong.

“I say every year that I’ll see how the body feels at the end of the season, but this could be it for me. And you never know whether the phone will ring or not.

“I thought playing for the England XI was the big thing for me, but having the chance to go to a World Cup is a brilliant feeling.

“Helping Stamford stay up and going to a World Cup would be the perfect way to end it.”

Bastock - who is Boston United’s all time appearance record holder - has made more than 1,000 first-team appearances in a career which has stretched almost 30 years.

He entered the senior game after winning the FA Youth Cup with Coventry in 1987.

Could he now go full circle and bow out with a World Cup winners’ medal?