James Maddison speaks out on lack of England game time at the World Cup | Football

Gareth Southgate picked James Maddison as a late inclusion in his 26-man England squad (The FA via Getty)

James Maddison insists he is ‘desperate’ to get on the pitch for England at the World Cup and maintains he will be fully prepared if called upon by Gareth Southgate.

Maddison has been one of the standout midfielders in the Premier League this year but is yet to play a single minute of England’s World Cup campaign in Qatar.

The Leicester City midfielder missed England’s first two group games due to a knee problem but he is now fully fit as Southgate’s side prepare to face France in the quarter final on Saturday.

‘Involvement doesn’t always mean minutes on the pitch and that’s something that I’ve probably learned in the last few weeks of being out here,’ Maddison told talkSPORT.

‘Of course, every player wants to play and I’m no different, I’m desperate to get out there and show what I can do but it’s one of them.

‘It’s my first major tournament at senior level and it’s brilliant to be a part of.

James Maddison is yet to feature for England at the World Cup (The FA via Getty)

‘It’s such a learning curve and you gain so much experience on a daily basis without even realising on how it works and what it takes to be successful.

‘We have been successful – what a brilliant performance last night. We were very convincing against a good Senegal team in the knockouts.

‘I’m feeling good. The injury is gone, I’m feeling 100 per cent. I’ve been training for a while now and have been available for the last couple of games and so it’s just about being patient, staying ready, which I am, working hard and trying to be an option for the manager.’

When asked if Southgate has given a message to those who are not starting games, Maddison said: ‘We’re professionals so we know how it works.

‘When the team is announced and you’re not in the starting XI it’s about having that professionalism and the unselfishness to prepare and be ready as if you are starting.

‘That sometimes can be difficult because every player wants to play and every player wants to represent England at the World Cup, but only 11 can start and there’s 26 of us.

‘You’ve got to put that aside and train and prepare as if you are playing because when called upon you need to be ready to go in and have that impact, whether it’s ten minutes off the bench or 30 minutes in extra-time.

‘You never know when that chance is going to be and you have to be ready.’

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