THERE came a point in his career that Neil Etheridge was convinced that a move to the Philippines was the most logical next step for him.
Yet here he is, 19 clean sheets later after an improbable run for Cardiff City, all set to take the English Premier League by storm.
A loss by Fulham and a draw with Reading on Sunday assured that Etheridge and Cardiff City are set to be automatically promoted to the English top flight after 46 games in the second-tier championship.
In an interview with Stuart James of English-based publication the Guardian, Etheridge shared his struggles and how close he came to a move to his mother's country, where he plays for the Azkals.
“I sold my house and I sold my cars and I was about a week away from going back to the Philippines," Etheridge told the Guardian.
After bouncing around and an a fruitless stint with Warsall, Etheridge got picked up by manager Neil Warnock for Cardiff City and the rest just took care of itself.
“The manager brought in players that were hungry and had a point to prove,” Etheridge continued.
“And they are players who believe in his philosophy, which is a winning way. I think he’ll admit himself that we don’t always play the prettiest but we come out with results.”
Cardiff City's promotion just made an amazing year even better for Etheridge, who played in the Azkals side that made history by breaking into the Asian Cup for the first time.
That's something that Etheridge is also truly proud of.
The 28-year-old Etheridge hopes to finally see action in Premier League after failing to make the first team in his stint with Fulham.
"I’m very proud of my national team, we’ve got to the Asian Cup for the first time and I’m the first Southeast Asian player to get promoted and, hopefully, play in the Premier League next season.”