Begovic denies going on strike

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Football News

Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic has denied claims that he went on strike in an effort to engineer a move away from the Britannia Stadium.

Potters boss Tony Pulis claimed that the Bosnian stopper refused to play in last week's Carling Cup tie against Shrewsbury as rumours of interest from Barclays Premier League heavyweights Chelsea and Manchester City gathered pace.

"I never refused to play. I'd never do such a thing to turn down a chance to play a first-team game," Begovic told BBC Radio 5 Live.

Pulis signed Begovic from Portsmouth last season in an attempt to provide Thomas Sorensen with competition for the number one jersey at the Britannia Stadium.

The 23-year-old has only made three starts for Stoke since though and is frustrated at not being able to dislodge Sorensen as Pulis' first choice.

Stoke chairman Peter Coates revealed that the club had rejected a bid from Chelsea for Begovic, but the former Pompey goalkeeper denies that he tried to force through a move to the Premier League champions by refusing to play.

He added: "I was aware that there was a bid made and he (Pulis) said it was being considered.

"We spoke about it, it was a private conversation and for it to get out publicly was a little bit disappointing.

"I tried to see him before the team meeting but he refused to see me and then he named the team.

"We spoke about the situation and as far as he was concerned he understood the position I was in and he didn't have any problems with me not playing at the time and I thought that was the end of the story but I would never go on strike. That's an absolutely disgraceful accusation for people to make."

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Asmir Begovic
Shrewsbury Town
Stoke City
Manchester City
League Cup
Premier League
Thomas Sorensen

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