'Devastated' Maddison: I thought there would be a space for me


James Maddison says he is “devastated” not to make England’s final squad for Euro 2024, adding he felt he deserved a place as he “brings something different” to the team.

Tottenham’s Maddison became the first England player to be cut from the 33-player provisional squad on Wednesday and left the camp that evening.

Maddison tweeted on Thursday, hours before Southgate confirmed his final 26-man squad, saying: “Devastated doesn’t quite cut it.

England midfielders
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The six England midfielders in Gareth Southgate’s 26-man squad

“Trained well and worked hard all week but if I’m honest with myself, my form for Spurs when coming back from injury in the second half of the season probably wasn’t at the levels I had set which gave Gareth a decision to make.

“I still thought there would be a space for me in a 26-man squad as I feel I bring something different & had been a mainstay in this whole qualifying campaign for Euro 2024 in Germany but the manager has made the decision and I have to respect that.

“I’ll be back, I have no doubt. Wishing the boys all the luck in the world out in Germany, unbelievable group and lads that I literally call some of my best friends. I genuinely hope football comes home.

England manager Gareth Southgate has to cut his now-31-player preliminary squad down to 26 by 11pm on Friday – around an hour after England’s final Euro 2024 warm-up game against Iceland at Wembley.

England then begin their Euro 2024 campaign on June 16 against Serbia.

Maddison’s wait for a major tournament appearance with England goes on. The Tottenham midfielder made the final 2022 World Cup squad but failed to make an appearance before the Three Lions’ quarter-final exit.

Liverpool’s Jones – who has also left the camp – is yet to be capped by England.

Analysis: Maddison’s England exit no surprise

Sky Sports’ Sam Blitz:

“With three goals and five assists in his first nine Premier League games for Tottenham, Maddison was on course for Player of the Season, let alone a spot in the England Euros squad.

“He was a shoo-in nine months ago, but now he is the first to be omitted from this extended England group.

“This is no surprise. His form has dropped off since that scintillating start for Spurs this season. The only Premier League goal contributions he made since March 10 came against Burnley and Sheffield United, while he was not given a starting role in a makeshift England line-up against Bosnia.

“A three-month injury in the middle of the season halted his progress but his form has not recovered since, and there is a growing pattern in Maddison’s seasons. In the last five campaigns, he has started them strongly then tailed off. That is not ideal for a player hoping to make summer tournaments for his country.

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“Perhaps the performances of Eze and Cole Palmer against Bosnia swayed Southgate’s thinking. Both players – who are attacking and wide-midfielder hybrids – impressed in the friendly and have moved above Maddison in the pecking order.

“And with Bellingham and Foden world-class options on top of that, it means the player who so many clamoured for to make the 2022 World Cup squad – and snuck in at the last minute – is the first to be cut from this Euros squad.”



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