James Maddison attempts to quell fears over his World Cup participation as he claims the injury which forced him off in Leicester’s win over West Ham was ‘only a small problem’ and ‘can’t wait’ to meet up with his England team-mates
- James Maddison went off with an injury in Saturday’s match against West Ham
- The Leicester playmaker was hooked in the first-half after going down injured
- Maddison held onto his knee as he received treatment before being removed
- The 25-year-old was picked by Gareth Southgate for England’s World Cup squad
- He has offered England fans some reassurance following his early withdrawal
James Maddison has played off concerns over his World Cup participation after he limped off in Leicester’s victory over West Ham on Saturday.
The Leicester playmaker went down off the ball clutching his knee, sitting on the turf and cutting a shocked figure as he received on-pitch treatment at the London Stadium.
Despite his early withdrawal from the game, Maddison said it was only a ‘small problem’ while Brendan Rodgers said he took his player off as a ‘precautionary’ measure.
Leicester star James Maddison (middle) has been subbed off against West Ham
West Ham skipper and England teammate Declan Rice (right) consoled Maddison on the turf
In a tweet after the game, Maddison offered some reassurance to Southgate and England managers as he wrote: ‘Another win & another goal. Perfect way to finish before the break. Injury isn’t too bad! A small problem that was causing a bit of soreness. Can’t wait to meet up with the lads Monday.’
Maddison put Leicester ahead with an eighth minute strike but was withdrawn midway through the first-half after physios decided he was unable to carry on.
The 24-year-old went down while Leicester were out of possession and immediately sat down on the turf as worries England supporters and teammates inside the ground watched on.
West Ham captain and England teammate Declan Rice was one of the first on the scene as he consoled a dishevelled looking Maddison.
There were fears Maddison’s World Cup place was in doubt following his injury on Saturday
Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers reassured Maddison (right) as he left the pitch at West Ham
Positive signs showed Maddison standing on up and walking off the pitch unaided before he was quickly ushered down the West Ham tunnel and back to the visitors changing room to receive treatment.
Maddison is the first England casualty of the Premier League’s final round of fixtures before the World Cup as national teams around the world anxiously wait to see their stars join national team camps.
Gareth Southgate is permitted to make changes to his 26-man England squad up until 6pm on Monday evening but will be hoping the Leicester star’s injury is superficial and doesn’t require any layoff.
England manager Southgate will be relieved to hear the news about Maddison
Maddison’s World Cup inclusion has been one of the most highly-debated picks as Southgate opted to hand the midfielder his first national call-up since 2019.
His only senior England appearance came in a 7-0 win over Montenegro during the Three Lions’ Euro 2020 qualifying campaign. Since then Maddison has been an outcast under Southgate.
The Leicester star’s involvement in the World Cup squad comes after a stellar start to the season with the Foxes. Maddison has scored seven Premier League goals and registered three assists so far this season.
Maddison later returned to the Leicester bench after receiving treatment for his injury
Maddison later returned to take his seat on the Foxes bench in the second-half against West Ham, smiling and watching on with his teammates in the dugout.
His injury woes will come as huge concern for Southgate and his England staff after already losing Reece James and Ben Chilwell over the past month, while Kyle Walker has been included in his squad despite not yet returning to full fitness.