Twente putting faith in rising Stoch

Miroslav Stoch is determined that his lack of height will not hamper his career, with the 19-year-old – on loan at FC Twente – telling uefa.com: "Everything will go well, despite this handicap."

On-loan Twente winger Miroslav Stoch celebrates his first goal for Slovakia
On-loan Twente winger Miroslav Stoch celebrates his first goal for Slovakia ©AFP

Miroslav Stoch is determined that his lack of height will not hamper his career, with the 19-year-old – on loan at FC Twente – telling uefa.com: "Everything will go well, despite this handicap."

'New circumstances'
Now capped four times by Slovakia, the 1.68m-tall winger made just three league appearances for his hometown club, FC Nitra, before being snapped up by Chelsea FC as a 17-year-old in 2006, so he is not overly concerned about moving abroad again this season for a loan spell with Twente. "It was shock, but pleasant," he said of his Chelsea move. "I didn't speak English very well and needed some time to adapt, but it will be no problem at Twente. I know how to adapt to new circumstances quickly."

Getting sharper
He has already made two starts for Steve McClaren's side – one in the UEFA Champions League third qualifying round and one in the league – and is hoping that he can gain a lot from his time in Enschede, where fellow Slovakian teenager, forward Andrej Rendla, is also playing. "I am not as sharp as the rest of my team as Chelsea started preparing for the new season over two weeks later than Twente, but it's getting better every day," he said. "I like the new place; they look to have a good team here. I believe Twente can get some good results in Europe too."

World Cup campaign
'Miňo' is also focusing on Slovakia's bid for a place in the 2010 FIFA World Cup finals, having scored his first goal for his country in a 7-0 win against San Marino on 6 June. His side surprisingly top Group 3, and Stoch said: "It would be fantastic to qualify for the World Cup with Slovakia. We have started impressively and I know very well how difficult the final steps could be, but my big dream is to play in such a tournament."

Small but speedy
Initially a defender, Stoch feels his conversion to a winger during his time at Nitra has helped him to make the best of his one disadvantage as a player – his relative lack of height. "My height is not my fault, but I have other powers," explained the exceptionally pacy player, saying of his athleticism: "That is my advantage, and you will see that everything will go well, despite this handicap."

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