Newcastle United transfer target misses training as concern grows ahead of World Cup opener

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England have an injury concern heading into Monday’s World Cup opener with Iran.

James Maddison is a doubt for England’s World Cup opener against Iran on Monday afternoon after he missed a second day of training.

The 25-year-old limped out of Leicester City’s 2-0 win at West Ham United last Saturday but declared himself fit to link up with Gareth Southgate’s 26-man squad.

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Maddison, however, is still nursing his knee problem as Three Lions medics manage his workload in a bid to have him available to face Iran in three days’ time.

The former Norwich City midfielder listened in to Friday’s team meeting on the training pitch before heading back inside to undergo treatment and some light gym work.

Speaking about his injury earlier this week, Maddison said: “We had a scan the day before we met up. It was a positive scan.

Leicester City and England midfielder James Maddison. Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)Leicester City and England midfielder James Maddison. Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Leicester City and England midfielder James Maddison. Photo by PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images) | AFP via Getty Images

“I had a little problem in the week building up to the West Ham game and post-Everton game which was the week before for us.

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“I wanted to play, I didn’t want to not give it a go because of the World Cup. That’s not the person I am.’

Maddison’s excellent form at Leicester to earn his first England call up since 2019 hasn’t gone unnoticed on Tyneside, with Newcastle fans watching with a keen eye.

Eddie Howe’s side attempted to sign Maddison in the summer but had two bids rejected - the highest being over £40million - by the Foxes.

Ahead of the January transfer window, it remains to be seen whether or not United will reignite their interest in the player, whose contract expires in 2024.

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