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James Maddison deserves England call-up, says Norwich City chief

James Maddison thrived under Daniel Farke's stewardship at Norwich City last season. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

James Maddison thrived under Daniel Farke's stewardship at Norwich City last season. Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images

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Daniel Farke thinks James Maddison deserves his place in the England squad – but has played down his role in the former Norwich City star’s rapid rise.

The playmaker scored 15 goals and created another 11 during 49 appearances in all competitions, finishing an exceptional campaign under the German’s guidance as City’s player of the season and being named in the EFL team of the year.

The 21-year-old could make his senior international debut tonight, after a fine start to Premier League life following his move to Leicester in a deal worth up to £24million – with the Three Lions in Croatia for a Uefa Nations League clash.

“I’m totally happy for James Maddison because I know how desperate he is to develop each and every day, and to make the best out of his career,” City’s head coach said.

“We spoke a lot about how he should develop and where I see him in a few years and although he is still young he is there with an unbelievable attitude, grown up in his whole behaviour and self-critical, analyses his game and each and every day wants to improve himself.

“That he is already there in the plans of Gareth Southgate is a sign of his quality and is also a sign of his character to be allowed to play for such an unbelievably great nation in terms of football.

MORE: Maddison determined to show he belongs with England

“To be allowed at this young age in this important role, to be involved at least, is outstanding but I also get the feeling it’s well deserved.

“James enjoys this feeling and I think everyone around him can be really proud but it’s also important that he takes this as motivation to work even harder, to improve further on, because that’s what he has to do.

“If he goes further on in this style and this development he can reach some really extraordinary things during his career.”

Farke does not want to take too much credit for Maddison’s rise to the top of the game though.

“I’m happy for him, it’s not up to me, I’m not important,” Farke added with a smile. “Most important is the player, the potential of the player and his will to learn and improve.

“I’m standing on the sideline with my hands in my pockets, watching how he’s playing and enjoying seeing him play! I’m not important, he’s important.”

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