James Maddison says he’s ‘good enough’ to play for England and ‘hungry’ for chance on international stage

Leicester City’s attacking midfielder James Maddison knows there’s plenty of competition for places in the England squad under Gareth Southgate, but believes he has what it takes to merit a regular spot.

The 24-year-old is one of several players who are relatively inexperienced on the international scene, but thriving domestically with their clubs. That collection includes 13-cap Mason Mount, four-cap Bukayo Saka, three-cap Phil Foden and Jack Grealish, who has five caps and has been among the Premier League’s top performers this season in the eyes of many.

Other than Foden, though, who is top of the table with Manchester City, Maddison can point to playing in a team winning more games than any of the others, partly as a result of his performances. Leicester are third in the league table, with the former Norwich City man scoring six and claiming seven assists so far this term.

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He says a recall to the Three Lions set-up is his clear goal which he is constantly working towards.

“I want to be back in the England squad – simple as that,” he told BBC Sport. “I’m a lad who has grown up in England, gone through the lower leagues and that feeling of representing my country against Montenegro – which I did in what feels like a long time ago now – was the best feeling ever.

“That’s something that I want, that’s something that I’m very hungry for. That’s why I try to improve every day.”

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While he’s striving to convince Southgate of his worth, Maddison has the full confidence of Brendan Rodgers at Leicester, where he is allowed to express himself in an attack-minded side – and the midfielder has absolute belief that he has all the tools required to shine at the highest level.

“I know I’m good enough and more than capable, I just want that opportunity to go and show what I can do on that international stage.

“I want it all about me. I put pressure on myself every day. I want to be the best player that James Maddison can be. I want everyone questioning me and talking about me, that’s what drives me.

“I always back myself, I always believe in myself, because that has got me where I am today. That attitude and mentality won’t change.”

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