James Maddison should have a place in Gareth Southgate’s World Cup plans.
That is the view of Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers, who believes the Foxes’ number 10 is certainly worthy of a place on the Three Lions plane to Qatar later this month.
Maddison, 25, has been one of the biggest talking points in the country. Should I go to Qatar, shouldn’t I go to Qatar? – Pundits and fans have been divided, but Rodgers is under no illusions that the former Norwich City playmaker is ‘ready for a World Cup’.
In action during Saturday night’s Premier League main game against Frank Lampard’s Everton, Maddison, although unlucky enough not to be on the scoreboard, was undoubtedly one of the Foxes’ best players.
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Setting up teammate Youri Tielemans, who scored a ‘Goal of the Season’ contender, Maddison’s recent assist has now taken his direct contribution tally to eight for the season.
Asked if Maddison should be in contention for a place in England’s final 25-man squad for this month’s World Cup, Rodgers, who spoke after the match with Sky Sports’ Geoff Shreeves, said: “To me, it’s not a debate, that’s reality.
“There are so many top-tier players and it’s great to see so many attacking players doing really well, but if you can’t find a [spot for a] player of that quality who has produced consistently over the last 18 months, it’s obviously sad in terms of football perspective. He wears tonight, his skill on the ball, his knowledge, his cunning. You want to be creating goals, scoring goals and he is one of the best at that.
“He is a player who is risky in his game but he is risky at the right times. He’s in attendance tonight and probably unlucky not to score late.
“An absolutely brilliant player who is ready for a World Cup with his maturity. He is 25 years old and he is performing like this, week after week in the Premier League and for him, he cannot do more. He is an outstanding talent.”
Do you agree with Rogers? – Should Maddison be part of the England squad for the World Cup? – Let us know in the comments.