James Maddison faces England World Cup heartbreak after injury

England may have suffered a nightmare blow just nine days before starting their 2022 World Cup campaign in Qatar. Leicester City midfielder James Maddison went off injured in the 25th minute after opening the scoring against West Ham United at London Stadium.

Maddison made his childhood dream come true on Thursday when Gareth Southgate rewarded his sensational form with a call-up to England’s World Cup squad. And his impressive feats continued at the start of this afternoon’s Premier League clash at West Ham, opening the scoring after eight minutes.

However, the 25-year-old came back down to earth less than 20 minutes later after fumbled with an apparent hamstring or knee injury. Robbie Savage, appearing on BT Sport Score, admitted “this is bad” as he limped off at the London stadium.

After the game, Leicester manager Brendan Rodger confirmed: “He’s fine. He had an irritation on the other side of his knee. So there was no muscle injury. He hasn’t trained that much in the Everton game, just a couple of lighter days. He wanted to try but he’ll be fine, it was just a precaution. It’s such a tough day for players going to the World Cup and we’ve tried to protect him.”

The Three Lions take on Iran on Monday, November 21, and he expected to have been in contention to break into the starting lineup.

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Maddison has been in inspired form this season, helping Rodgers turn around Leicester’s horrendous early form. The Foxes playmaker has scored seven goals and provided four assists in 13 Premier League games, including five goals and three assists in his last eight.

Following his call, Maddison took to social media to express his joy, accompanying his reaction with a picture of him as a child with a big smile and England face paint. He wrote: “I haven’t assimilated… I’m going to the World Cup. Dreams really do come true.”

READ MORE: Ivan Toney sends a clear message to Southgate after Man City double

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