Liverpool assistant manager Pep Lijnders has declared that it should be a “no-brainer” for Gareth Southgate to call up Curtis Jones to his next England squad.
After overcoming some early-season injury problems, the 22-year-old has emerged as a key figure in Liverpool’s midfield.
As well as reliability on the ball and intelligence in defence, Jones has also started to add goals to his game, scoring four times in his last seven outings.
And when asked about the possibility of a call-up for the young Scouser, Lijnders replied: “A no-brainer. You have eyes, no?
“If you are top of the league and you are one of the most decisive players in the team, who is, with and without the ball, the player who sets the tone, who takes the initiative, who always shows up…”
The Dutchman also lavished Jones with praise for calling to be substituted after feeling discomfort in his muscle against Bournemouth last time out, a mature decision that helped him avoid injury.
He added: “Playing a lot of games, you get some small niggles as well, you saw in the last game. He is still young but he acts like a senior.
“He takes himself out as a precaution and yesterday [Monday] he was fine, no issue, so that’s really, really cool.”
The most recent England squad, for November’s Euro 2024 qualifiers against Malta and North Macedonia, saw Declan Rice, Jordan Henderson, Kalvin Phillips, Conor Gallagher and Cole Palmer called up as midfielders.
Southgate also considers Trent Alexander-Arnold a midfielder, while Jude Bellingham is a surefire starter having missed the last squad due to injury.
England are next in action with friendlies against Brazil (March 23) and Belgium (March 26) as part of their preparations for the summer’s Euros.
Jones was most recently involved with England U21s, scoring the winner in the U21 Euro final against Spain in July, but turning 23 later this month is no longer eligible.