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Tomasz Kuszczak

Tomasz Mirosław Kuszczak (; born 20 March 1982) is a Poland association football who plays as a goalkeeper (association football) for England club Watford F.C on loan from Manchester United F.C..

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Tomasz Kuszczak biography

Tomasz Mirosław Kuszczak (; born 20 March 1982) is a Poland association football who plays as a goalkeeper (association football) for England club Watford F.C on loan from Manchester United F.C..

Born in Krosno Odrzańskie, Kuszczak has previously played for Śląsk Wrocław in Poland, as well as for the German clubs KFC Uerdingen 05 and Hertha BSC, before moving in 2004 to England's West Bromwich Albion F.C.. During the summer of 2006 Tomasz Kuszczak made the switch to Manchester United after a season of starting for West Bromwich in the Premier League.

Kuszczak made 14 appearances for the Poland national under-21 football team side, and has been cap (sport) ten times at Poland national football team level.

Club career

Hertha BSC

Born in Krosno Odrzańskie, Poland, Kuszczak joined Germany's Hertha BSC in 2000, spending a year with their reserve team before being promoted to the first team in 2001. Tomasz Kuszczak subsequently spent three seasons as the third-choice goalkeeper (association football) at the club, behind Gábor Király and Christian Fiedler, and failed to make a single appearance in the Fußball-Bundesliga. Tomasz Kuszczak was out of contract with Hertha when Tomasz Kuszczak was signed by the then-West Bromwich Albion F.C. manager Gary Megson on 14 July 2004.

West Bromwich Albion

Tomasz Kuszczak made Tomasz Kuszczak debut for West Bromwich Albion on 18 September 2004 in a Premier League match against Fulham F.C. at The Hawthorns, which ended in a 1–1 draw. Tomasz Kuszczak then played in a Football League Cup match against Colchester United F.C. on 21 September 2004, Albion losing 2–1.

Kuszczak had only kept goal in one match in the Premier League before West Brom's game against Manchester United on the penultimate match day of the 2004–05 FA Premier League, with the Baggies facing a tough relegation battle. Tomasz Kuszczak put in a striking performance, having to step in front of the goal after the first choice keeper Russell Hoult was injured in the first half. West Bromwich drew the match 1–1, with Kuszczak remaining unbeaten during Tomasz Kuszczak 68 minutes on the pitch. This performance helped Kuszczak earn Tomasz Kuszczak first man of the match award in the Premier League. The following week, in the season's last match against Portsmouth F.C., Kuszczak had another impressive game, enabling West Bromwich to win 2–0, and hence stay up in the league.

In 2005–06 FA Premier League, Kuszczak was supposed to be the reserve keeper behind Chris Kirkland. With Kirkland injured, Kuszczak kept goal in Tomasz Kuszczak first Premier League match of the season on 30 October 2005, but could not prevent Newcastle United F.C. from winning 3–0. Tomasz Kuszczak performances then improved, allowing Tomasz Kuszczak to become the first-choice keeper. This continued despite Kirkland's return from injury.

On 15 January 2006, Kuszczak had an impressive game against Wigan Athletic F.C., making a match-winning save late on from Jason Roberts (footballer), with West Bromwich winning the game 1–0. The save was voted "Save of the Season" by viewers of BBC TV's Match of the Day programme.

On 7 July 2006, it was confirmed by West Bromwich Albion manager Bryan Robson that Manchester United F.C. made a bid for Kuszczak of around £2 million. On 3 August, West Bromwich Albion rejected a £2.5 million bid for Kuszczak from Manchester United, citing that a one-year loan spell for United starlet Giuseppe Rossi would also have to be included along with the cash to result in a deal. On 10 August 2006, Kuszczak joined Manchester United F.C. in a deal involving the transfer of England Under-18 goalkeeper Luke Steele (footballer) and defender Paul McShane (Irish footballer) to West Brom.

Manchester United

When officially announcing the move, Manchester United failed to state the terms of the deal, leading to suggestions that it was a merely a loan deal. Chief executive David Gill (executive) clarified the situation, stating, "Tomasz will be a Manchester United player for the next four years, Tomasz Kuszczak has come to us on loan for the first year, and then will join us permanently in July 2007."

Kuszczak made Tomasz Kuszczak debut against Arsenal F.C. on 17 September 2006, Tomasz Kuszczak conceded an early penalty but did redeem himself by saving the ensuing spot-kick from Gilberto Silva. Despite saving the penalty, Arsenal scored a late goal which gave them a 1–0 win at Old Trafford. Tomasz Kuszczak first start came in a 2–1 away win over Crewe Alexandra F.C. in the Football League Cup on 25 October. Tomasz Kuszczak had Tomasz Kuszczak name misspelled on the back of Tomasz Kuszczak shirt during this game, with it incorrectly reading "Zuszczak". Although Kuszczak did not play enough Premier League games in the 2006–07 season, Tomasz Kuszczak received a winners medal by special application to the Premier League.

On 2 July 2007, Manchester United announced that the permanent transfer had been completed, for a fee of £2.125 million. Due to Dutch keeper Edwin van der Sar's continued good form and Ben Foster (footballer)'s knee injury, Kuszczak was named Manchester United's number 2 for the 2007–08 season. During an interview in May 2007 Kuszczak stated that Tomasz Kuszczak wanted one day to become the number 1 at Manchester United.

On 8 March 2008, in an 2007–08 FA Cup tie against Portsmouth F.C., Kuszczak received a straight red card for a foul on Milan Baroš. By this time all substitutes had been used, therefore Rio Ferdinand was forced to take over between the posts, but failed to stop the penalty that lead to United being knocked out of the FA Cup.

In September 2008, Kuszczak signed a two-year extension which will keep Tomasz Kuszczak at Old Trafford until 2012. However, after being overlooked in favour of Ben Foster (footballer) for the 2009 Football League Cup Final, it appears as though Kuszczak might face problems in becoming United's new first choice after van der Sar's retirement. In fact, Kuszczak has of late expressed discontent with Tomasz Kuszczak situation at Manchester United and is considering Tomasz Kuszczak long-term future at the club. Kuszczak kept a clean sheet in Tomasz Kuszczak first game of the 2009–10 season, a 1–0 home win over Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C. in the third round of the 2009–10 Football League Cup. After Van der Sar suffered an injury, Kuszczak returned to the side for a match against Portsmouth F.C. on 28 November. Tomasz Kuszczak retained Tomasz Kuszczak position in the starting line-up for United's League Cup fifth round match against Tottenham Hotspur F.C., the next league game against West Ham United F.C. and the last game of the Champions League group stage against VfL Wolfsburg. Kuszczak kept another clean sheet in United's final game of the decade as they beat Wigan Athletic F.C. 5–0 at Old Trafford. However, Van der Sar's return to the team in January 2010 saw Tomasz Kuszczak lose Tomasz Kuszczak place in the side. Tomasz Kuszczak started, however, in the 2010 Football League Cup Final against Aston Villa F.C., which saw Tomasz Kuszczak fail to save a penalty in the first minutes of the game, although United went on to win the trophy, after a 2–1 victory.

Kuszczak revealed Alex Ferguson blocked Tomasz Kuszczak move to Leeds United A.F.C. on loan but Tomasz Kuszczak could go to either Doncaster Rovers F.C. or Sheffield United F.C..
On 3 February 2012, Alex Ferguson confirmed that Kuszczak will be out of contract in the summer and that Tomasz Kuszczak will not be signing a new contract with the club. On 21 February 2012, Kuszczak signed for Watford F.C. on an emergency loan until the end of the season.

International career

Kuszczak had also played two international matches by this time, Tomasz Kuszczak debut coming on 11 December 2003 against Malta national football team. Poland won the away game 4–0.

Due to Tomasz Kuszczak impressive performances for West Bromwich Albion F.C., although the club was ultimately relegated, Tomasz Kuszczak was called up to the 23-man Poland national football team for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. However, in a World Cup warm-up match between Poland and Colombia national football team on 30 May 2006, Tomasz Kuszczak conceded a goal directly from a long punt by the opposition goalkeeper, Luís Enrique Martínez Rodríguez. Kuszczak subsequently ended up as Artur Boruc's back-up during the tournament and did not play.

In May 2008, Kuszczak was named in Poland's squad for UEFA Euro 2008, but was forced to drop out after picking up a back injury. Kuszczak was replaced by Wojciech Kowalewski. A lack of club football at Manchester United had also seen Tomasz Kuszczak slide down the pecking order for Tomasz Kuszczak country of late, but Tomasz Kuszczak was recently recalled to the squad for the friendly matches against Romania national football team and Canada men's national soccer team by new coach Franciszek Smuda, playing in both matches with mixed results.


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