Johann Gudmundsson says Iceland's World Cup qualification is an 'unbelievable' achievement
By Richard Cooke
Last Updated: 12/10/17 5:22pm
Iceland and Burnley midfielder Johann Gudmundsson has described his country's achievement of reaching the World Cup as "unbelievable".
Iceland booked a place at their first World Cup finals in Russia next year as winners of Group I, finishing above Croatia, Ukraine and Turkey to become the smallest nation to qualify.
It was a remarkable feat for a country which has a population of approximately 350,000 and the magnitude of the achievement is not lost on Gudmundsson, who scored in both of their Qualifiers this month in Turkey and then at home to Kosovo.
"Unbelievable", he said. "To do it at home was special, for Iceland to be at the World Cup is quite magnificent.
"We are the smallest nation ever to qualify so we are in the history books. It was a great moment and a tough group as well so we've done a really good job."
Iceland's success comes on the back of their appearance at last year's European Championships where they famously beat England and knocked Roy Hodgson's team out of the tournament.
Gudmundsson thinks it is no fluke that Iceland have kept their run going: "Obviously a lot of people after the Euros thought that was it for us but we are not fazed by anybody. The away games were tough but we did not lose at home so that was really important for us."
The 26-year-old was asked if he ever dreamed of reaching the World Cup: "It was a dream, but it was dream you thought was too tough to make.
"It's hard to get into words what it means. Being at the Euros was an amazing achievement but now the World Cup is even bigger."