James Maddison absent from England training ahead of World Cup opener against Iran with Gareth Southgate ‘managing his workload’

    James Maddison was the only player absent from training on Thursday after of England’s World Cup opener against Iran.

    The Leicester playmaker is suffering from a minor knee injury, with the 25-year-old limping off in Saturday’s 2-0 win at West Ham.

    Maddison is currently suffering from a knee injury which could cause him to miss Monday’s clash with Iran

    Richard Pelham / The Sun

    Maddison is currently suffering from a knee injury which could cause him to miss Monday’s clash with Iran

    Leicester midfielder Maddison left Thursday’s training session at the Al Wakrah SC Stadium early

    Richard Pelham / The Sun

    Leicester midfielder Maddison left Thursday’s training session at the Al Wakrah SC Stadium early

    He declared himself fit after his early exit at the London Stadium, with the player taking part in a light session with the Three Lions on Wednesday.

    But his knock has restricted him of taking part in full training with his teammates as boss Gareth Southgate looks to manage his fitness.

    Maddison was seen departing training early at the Al Wakrah SC Stadium.

    talkSPORT’s England correspondent Faye Carruthers, speaking from Qatar, said: “It’s about 33 degrees and I’m melting just a tiny bit.

    “The players have just come out, they’ve had their usual huddle and chat with Gareth Southgate and Steve Holland at the start of the training session.

    “James Maddison came out for the huddle but he’s not going to be in full training for the rest of the squad, they’re managing his load at the moment.

    Southgate’s England side kick off their World Cup campaign on Monday

    Richard Pelham / The Sun

    Southgate’s England side kick off their World Cup campaign on Monday

    “The other 25 players are going to be continuing.

    “It’s the usual decent mood in the camp, everyone is pretty chilled out and happy.

    “But this is the hottest it’s been and training in, because last night they trained at around 4:30pm which is a little bit cooler and replicating the weather they’ll get for the opening game against Iran.

    “But this morning it’s absolutely scorching.”

    Maddison had declared himself as fit and raring to go in Wednesday’s press conference.

    And while he said he’s ‘hopeful’ it won’t affect his participation in Monday’s clash against Iran, the player admitted he will need to undergo some specialist work with the medical team.

    He remarked: “The injury is OK. We had a scan the day before we met up and it was a positive scan.

    Maddison spoke to the media on England’s first full day in Qatar

    AFP

    Maddison spoke to the media on England’s first full day in Qatar

    “I had a little problem in the lead up to the West Ham game. I wanted to play, I didn’t want to not give it a go because of the World Cup, that’s not the sort of person I am.

    “I wanted to show the focus was still there. I managed to score early and carry on for a little bit after that.

    “But there was a bit of soreness and it was getting a little bit worse as the game was going on because I didn’t want it to get worse and thought it was best to get someone else on who can run at full sprint.

    “The scan was a good scan and no major problem. I’ll have to do a little bit of work with the physios here to get up to full speed.

    “It shouldn’t affect me playing in the first game. I might just have to do some separate work with the physios, but I’m hopeful I’ll be fine.”

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