Iwelumo vows to repay faith
Striker thanks Burley and fans for their support
By Chris Burton. Last Updated: November 20, 2008 6:00pm
Iwelumo: Dreadful miss
Chris Iwelumo has vowed to reward George Burley and the Scotland fans for sticking by him.
The Wolves striker was handed his first international start against Argentina on Wednesday, little over a month after his glaring miss in a 2010 World Cup qualifier against Norway cost the Scots two crucial points on the road to South Africa.
The towering front-man could have been forgiven for cowering away from a possible repeat, but was full of gusto in the midweek friendly contest against Diego Maradona's side.
He claims words of encouragement from national coach Burley, plus positive energy from the fans, have helped him to put his Norwegian nightmare to one side.
"He (Burley) has got faith in me and I will repay that in whatever way I can," Iwelumo said.
"He put a lot of confidence in me after the Norway game. He thought all the other parts of my game were exceptional that day.
"Obviously, the chance is massive and everyone will remember that, but that's part and parcel of football.
"I came off the phone to him and I felt good.
"You always have that little doubt in your head though, so it's fantastic to start and I want many more.
"Scotland haven't seen the best of me, so hopefully if I get into future squads I can get that little bit of luck.
"I think as soon as you get that first goal, you just kick on from there."
Iwelumo also believes he has emerged as a stronger character from having to face his international demons.
"There were e-mails getting sent to Wolves every day from Scottish fans," he said.
"I thank all the fans, because it was fantastic to read them. It just shows there are a lot of good people out there."
The former St Mirren player added: "I thought the reception was great.
"Even after the miss during the match, they were cheering everything I was doing. That's fantastic, you take a lot of plusses from that.
"It does come into my head every now and again, but you have to let it go.
"It's definitely character-building. That's one of the reasons I was delighted to be back. I think it shows some kind of character to come and face the music."