With Leicester City’s season over, attention turns to the upcoming international fixtures (as well as some European games or something) and the first big news is the announcement of Gareth Southgate’s England squad.
For the Foxes fans, the obvious name that jumps right off the page at you is James Justin, named as one of 5 fullbacks in the group.
It’s an inclusion that’s almost exactly a year overdue.
After an astonishing start to last season, playing almost every minute for the Foxes all across the back line, the former Luton Town defender looked certain to force his way into the delayed Euro 2020 squad last summer.
Unfortunately, that all came crashing down as a cruciate injury ruled him out, not only for the summer, but for nearly 50 Leicester games, until his return in January this year.
He’s comfortable at right or left back - he’s very comfortable with the ball and a super athlete. He’s a very good person from the feedback I’ve had and we’re really looking forward to working closely with him - Southgate’s perspective
Since returning, he’s looked like his old self, featuring 19 times across all competitions, and earning his way back into the squad. Nonetheless, he’s probably only made it because a number injuries, notably Luke Shaw and some Chelsea LB.
He joins the squad for some pretty decent fixtures, as England will face off int he semi-serious Nations League against Hungary and the very-serious Germany and Italy.
As exciting as it is to see JJ make the squad for the first time, there is another story that’s hard to miss from a Leicester-centric viewpoint.
Here are the English players who registered at least 15 non-penalty goals and assists in the Premier League this season and whether they made the England squad.— Jordan Blackwell (@JrdnBlackwell) May 24, 2022
✔️ Bowen – 22
✔️ Kane – 22
❌ Maddison – 20
✔️ Mount – 20
❌ Vardy – 17
❌ Barnes – 16
✔️ Saka – 16
✔️ Sterling – 15
After a fantastic season that saw him pick up a combined 20 goals and assists in the Premier League (and 29 in all competitions), midfielder James Maddison has again missed out selection.
At this point, it looks a lot like Southgate just doesn’t like him, and it’s going to take quite something for Madders to break in. We can only hope this doesn't convince other international hopefuls to lean elsewhere.