‘Intelligent’ Maddison tipped for long England career
Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers feels midfielder James Maddison has everything he needs to be a top-class international footballer.
Maddison, 22, is yet to make his England debut but is in line to play some part as the Three Lions face Bulgaria on Saturday and Kosovo next Tuesday in a couple of Euro 2020 qualifiers.
The midfielder has enjoyed an excellent start to the Premier League season with the Foxes, receiving praise from his manager and ex-players alike and it seems as though he is set for a stellar career with both club and country.
Having scored seven top-flight goals from 36 appearances last term, the youngster has yet to get off the mark in 2019-2020 but his overall play has been of a high standard and England chief Gareth Southgate will hope he can replicate that while wearing his national colours.
Rodgers sees no reason why he should not and feels the talented schemer’s ability to adapt to the different situations he encounters on the pitch marks him out from others.
“He has intelligence,” said the Northern Irish tactician. “What he is improving on all the time is his tactical idea of the game.
“What he has is incredible ability and he is making improvements to his game. He is a really exciting player, you can see the level and quality of his passing. He is a big talent.”
Maddison played nine times for the England Under-21 side, scoring once but will hope to become a regular part of Southgate’s plans in an exciting era for the England team.
Having made the 2018 World Cup semi-finals, they finished third in the inaugural League of Nations and are already flying in qualification for next summer’s showpiece.
They sit top of Group A with maximum points, having scored 10 goals and conceded just one and six points during the international break would go a long way to seeing them qualify.
Neil Foster is an experienced journalist who specialises in cricket and rugby union. Neil also has a solid knowledge of tennis, golf and football.