James Maddison has hit back at those who question is dedication to football, with the Leicester midfielder admitting he ‘lives and breathes’ the game.
Maddison has made a huge impression since a £20m move to Leicester in 2018, creating more chances than any player in the Premier League and being called up to Gareth Southgate’s senior England squad.
The 22-year-old will be part of the squad which will face Kosovo in the Euro 2020 qualifier on Tuesday night and will be hoping to make his senior international debut, having featured for the U21 side at this summer’s European Championships.
Despite his impressive performances since making the step-up to the Premier League, Maddison came in for criticism recently from television presenter Jeremy Clarkson who questioned his dedication the sport.
James Maddison. Too long at the barber’s. Not enough time practicing football.
— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) August 18, 2019
Maddison missed an easy chance during Leicester’s 1-1 draw at Chelsea in August, a mistake which prompted Chelsea supporting Clarkson to suggest via Twitter that the playmaker was more interested in his hairstyle than improving his game.
The tweet saw Maddison come back at The Grand Tour host with a stinging reply and the Foxes star has dismissed Clarkson’s comments, revealing Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers has to drag him off the training ground.
“The manager still has to come and get me off the training ground as I’m out there till 1pm when training finishes at half 11,” he said in an interview with the Telegraph.
“If anyone wants to question whether I was concentrating on football enough, I’ll just leave that out there.”
— James Maddison (@Madders10) August 18, 2019
“My life is football. I live and breathe football. I love the game, I love watching it, I love playing it, I love talking about it. If anything, I sometimes need to take a step away from football.”