Audio: Norwich City’s Grant Holt puts his name in England frame
Grant Holt believes he has already proved he can perform at the top level – and if he is not in with a shout of making England's European Championship squad today then there is something wrong.
The Norwich City skipper completed the Premier League campaign with 15 goals thanks to victory over Aston Villa on Sunday, confirming Holt comfortably as England's second highest goalscorer behind Wayne Rooney.
With the top flight done and dusted for another year, attention turns to this summer's European Championships in Poland and Ukraine. New England manager Roy Hodgson's intentions will be clear for the first time with today's announcement at 1pm and Holt admitted that after the season he has had, he can't ignore the thought of tasting international football for the first time.
'You've definitely got to think about it,' said the 31-year-old.
'With the situation I'm in now and a lot of people are talking about it. With the goals I've scored and the performances I've put in, if I'm not in with a shout then something's wrong.
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'He'll either pick me or he won't, but I won't be far off I'm sure. I should be in his thoughts with what I've achieved this year and what I've done, but at the end of the day it's up to him to pick.
'The goalscoring record isn't bad, is it? It's been great and people will talk and talk about me and my goals, but I'm different to that. A lot of people have pinned me one way and they've never seen me play football. If they want to talk like that, then that's fine.
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'People keep saying I haven't done it at the top level but as I've said, there is no bigger league and every week you are playing against internationals.
'So I don't know where they are coming from with that a little bit.
'It baffles me to hear some people's comments and some of these people have ever seen me play football – but I'll just brush them off.'
Canaries' fans have more than one name to look out for, with goalkeeper John Ruddy – currently scheduled to marry fianc�e Laura on the same day as England's warm-up friendly with Belgium – also in contention.
'Someone said (England coach) Ray Clemence was here watching John (against Villa), so that was good because he turned in another great performance,' added Holt.
'So hopefully he'll get the call anyway and that will knacker his wedding up and kill all his plans. He's that tight he will hate that, so that would be great…'
Joking aside, Holt was steadfast in his support for Ruddy – especially after recent discussions over the likes of Ben Foster and Paul Robinson ending their self-imposed international retirement for Hodgson.
'I'd be delighted if my name is on the list but if it's not then I definitely want his to be on there,' said the City captain. 'There's no one better than John. Joe Hart is obviously at Manchester City and has done fantastic and Joe will probably be there for a long time because I can't see anyone ousting him.
'But if he turns in performance like that, which he's done for the last three weeks, there is no one better than him and Joe. Without a doubt he should be in that squad.
'People are talking about Ben Foster coming back out and doing this… well to be fair, he retired from his country so I don't think they should get him back out. They've retired, so if you don't want to play for your country you should retire and don't come back out.
'It doesn't matter if a new manager is in charge or whatever, it's your country.
'I wouldn't get them back out. I'd give John his chance and give the young lads and John the opportunity to show what he can do. Some of the saves he's pulled off have been unbelievable.'
Hodgson's 23-man squad will begin their preparations with a warm-up friendly in Norway on May 26, before the home game with Belgium on June 2.
England kick-off their Group D campaign against France in Donetsk on June 11, with Rooney suspended for the opening two games.