James Maddison not going to the World Cup with England would be "a shame for the country", said Brendan Rodgers after the Leicester City midfielder scored another two goals on Monday.

Maddison's continued absence from Gareth Southgate's Three Lions squad has been the source of some contention.

The 25-year-old has earned only a single England cap, in November 2019, and appears to face an uphill battle to gain favour with Southgate before Qatar 2022 kicks off next month.

Yet Maddison has started the Premier League season in outstanding form. After scoring two and assisting another in Leicester's 4-0 win over fellow strugglers Nottingham Forest, he has seven goal involvements in seven appearances.

Going back to the start of the previous campaign, Southgate's captain Harry Kane is the only English player with more Premier League goals (24) or goal involvements (34) than Maddison (17 goals, 10 assists).

"It's such a shame for the country and for James himself," manager Rodgers told Sky Sports. "You see his talent, and his performance level for the last 18 months I think everybody is clear on.

"I think it's only Harry Kane who has created and scored more goals than him, so to not even be in the squad...

"Even if he's not going to start, to have a player of that quality and not only in that, in international football, to have the personality to take the ball, be creative, take the ball and change the game, James is all of that. He's an absolutely brilliant player.

"I really hope over these next few months he can continue the form he's shown for 18 months and somehow get into the team, because if you're wanting creativity, you're wanting personality – he's improved his defensive side of his game, and he can play in a couple of positions.

"For me, he's an absolutely outstanding player, and he's up there.

"I love Phil Foden, Mason Mount, those boys who play there – Jack Grealish is different, Jack plays from the side – but Madders can play in a number of positions to a high level, and he showed that tonight."

Maddison, who said suggestions he would not be a good character within the group if not starting were "insulting", added: "It's been a weird position for me.

"We [Leicester] have been bottom of the league, and results have not been going our way, but I've almost been as confident as I've ever been in my career.

"I don't remember over the last 12 months playing better than I have and feeling as well as I have.

"It's obviously hard to answer this question [on his England hopes], because you want to say the right thing, you don't want to say the wrong thing, but that's an ambition of mine, a goal of mine.

"I'm a football man, I watch all the games, I watch international football, and an opportunity at that level would be something I desire. I almost know I'd have an impact.

"It's one I hope will come my way at some point."

Christian Eriksen believes he and Bruno Fernandes have formed a strong relationship in Manchester United's midfield due to their complementary qualities. 

Eriksen has become a key part of Erik ten Hag's new-look United team since swapping Brentford for Old Trafford in July, playing behind Fernandes in a deep-lying midfield role.

The Denmark international produced a masterful showing in United's last Premier League game against Arsenal, claiming an assist and leading his team-mates for passes completed (33) and chances created (three) in the 3-1 victory.

Speaking to United's media channels after winning the club's Player of the Month award for September, Eriksen said playing alongside Fernandes was a key reason for his success.

"Some people see us as very similar players, but they probably only look at the stats and don't see us, the player and the qualities," Eriksen said.

"We have different qualities, a different style of play and, with Bruno and in general, I think I'm learning to get to know all my team-mates better. 

"We're starting to get that connection. With Bruno, it's a good connection and it's nice to have such a good footballer in front of me.

"I think, from my own point of view, it's only been a few months but it feels like I've been here longer. 

"It's to do with the club, the people working for the club, the team. In general, I've been made to feel very welcome since day one and I felt at home straight away."

Eriksen carried his strong club form onto the international stage this month, scoring in Denmark's Nations League defeat to Croatia before producing a strong performance in a 2-0 win over France.

The 30-year-old will hope for a similar result when Denmark are reunited with Didier Deschamps' team in the World Cup group stages in November, but he expects to face a much-improved France side.

"We play France very often! In the Nations League, also before in the World Cup [in 2018], we played against France and now again," he added.

"The game was good for us the other day. It was a nice send-off before the World Cup, to get a good feeling before the World Cup. 

"We know, at the same time, France will be a completely different team when we play them next, with different players compared to what they had, but, for us, as a team, it was a perfect goodbye before the World Cup.

"Now there's no more breaks and I can be fully focused on United until the World Cup."

Ten Hag's team will face their toughest test to date when they travel to Manchester City on Sunday – each of United's last five managers have lost their first Manchester Derby in the Premier League (David Moyes, Louis van Gaal, Jose Mourinho, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick).

But Eriksen is looking forward to his first trip to the Etihad Stadium as a United player, adding: "It's going to be a tough test. 

"We're feeling good and in a good place, really flowing and I'm looking forward to the game. 

"It's a first derby for me personally, in Manchester, and hopefully it's going to be a fun game to play in and a fun game to watch."

Jurgen Klopp does not understand why anybody would focus only on Trent Alexander-Arnold's defending when he has "world-class talent" on the ball.

Liverpool right-back Alexander-Arnold has been the subject of much debate this week after being left out of England's matchday squad to face Germany on Monday.

Reece James started the match and Kyle Walker came off the bench, while Kieran Trippier was among the substitutes.

James appears to be Gareth Southgate's preferred option in that position, but Walker has made 50 appearances under the Three Lions manager. Trippier has turned out 37 times for Southgate, starting in both the 2018 World Cup semi-final and Euro 2020 final.

That leaves Alexander-Arnold – often outstanding for Liverpool – as fourth-choice and looking highly unlikely to feature at the World Cup, even if selected in the 26-man squad.

Southgate handed Alexander-Arnold his international debut in 2018, but he has since earned just 17 caps for his country.

While the 23-year-old's creative abilities are unquestioned – he leads the England quartet in chances created (2.4) and expected assists (0.32) per 90 minutes in the Premier League in 2022 – there are doubts around his defending.

Klopp has accepted Alexander-Arnold has room for improvement, but ahead of Saturday's game against Brighton and Hove Albion, he also suggested "nobody mentions" when the Liverpool man defends well.

"It's like you have a list, bad defending and good defending, and bad defending [is] massive, and the good defending [list] is like you can't even see," he said.

"That's what I see, because I'm not dumb."

Klopp was also keen to point out some of Alexander-Arnold's shortcomings are due to Liverpool's approach, as they are "extremely brave" in their pressing and "the pitch is too big to be everywhere".

Yet even when Alexander-Arnold is directly at fault, his club manager believes there is too much focus on those shortcomings.

"There are other situations where he was not aware of the situation, where they pass the ball through him, where it was a challenge he should've won – true," Klopp said. "Every player in the league has these challenges.

"With him, you pick it out, analyse so easy. All the experts sitting there, 'in this situation, you see it's a weakness'.

"Honestly, I just don't get it, I just don't get that part of it – that we just accept that a world-class talent gets judged by the one thing he's not as world-class as in other things."

And Klopp added: "If he would not be a good defender, he wouldn't play."

Mikel Arteta expects Arsenal to benefit from Gabriel Jesus' absence from the Brazil squad as he hopes to show Tite what he is missing before the World Cup.

Arsenal are top of the Premier League ahead of the north London derby against Tottenham on Saturday, but none of their three senior Brazilian stars were called up by the Selecao last month.

Gabriel, Gabriel Martinelli and Jesus had all been part of Tite's squad during the previous international window in June.

Yet they now face a race against time to prove themselves before Qatar 2022, which kicks off next month.

Jesus was a particularly surprising omission, having scored four goals and assisted another three in seven league appearances since joining Arsenal in July.

But Arteta revealed a determined response from his number nine, telling reporters of Jesus: "He's incredibly humble.

"He accepted the decision and the way he trained, it was just: 'Okay, I need to improve. I need to get better. I need to do more. I really want to be there [at the World Cup], it's a big aspiration for me, it's an incredible opportunity. And I'm in the right place to do that.'

"So, I think we will see that on the pitch again."

At international level, Jesus appears to be in direct competition with Spurs striker Richarlison, who has hit form at the right time with seven goals in his past six outings for Brazil.

Jesus is set to come up against him this weekend, but Arteta says his striker cannot be concerned by how others fare.

"He can only control what he can do. He cannot control what other players do," the Arsenal manager said. "And he's only focusing on that.

"So, he has ambition. We know that he plays with incredible commitment. And [on Saturday] he will play that way."

France midfielder Boubacar Kamara will be out of action until after the World Cup due to knee ligament damage, Aston Villa head coach Steven Gerrard has confirmed.

Kamara has been capped three times by France and was called up for their latest round of Nations League matches this month.

However, the 22-year-old had to withdraw from the squad after injuring his knee during Villa's 1-0 win against Southampton on September 16.

It was revealed last week Kamara had suffered ligament damage, and Gerrard announced on Friday the former Marseille player will not recover in time for Qatar 2022.

"Boubacar will be missing until after the World Cup, unfortunately, so that is a huge blow," Gerrard said at his pre-match press conference ahead of facing Leeds United.

"It's not ideal. We have had better days on the injury front."

Villa have also lost fellow marquee signing Diego Carlos, who ruptured his Achilles on just his second outing after joining from Sevilla.

Kamara's international team-mate Lucas Digne sustained a heel injury while away with his country and "will be unavailable in the coming weeks".

FIFA president Gianni Infantino has been urged to expel Iran from the World Cup because of the country's treatment of female football supporters.

The Open Stadiums campaign group claimed previous commitments by FIFA to encourage Iran to change its ways amounted to "empty words and promises".

The group said Iran has systemically kept women away from football stadiums "for over four decades", calling it a "gross human rights violation".

Pointing to "shameful scenes" of women being tear-gassed and pepper-sprayed when attempting to attend a World Cup qualifier against Lebanon in March, Open Stadiums said: "All this was happening, Mr Infantino, under your watch and, seemingly, with FIFA's protection and approval, judging by your organisation's inaction."

It labelled a commitment to allow women into the Azadi Stadium as "a short-term PR stunt" to boost the Iranian Football Association's image before the World Cup begins in November.

Iran are due to play England, Wales and the United States in the group stage, facing England in their opening Group B game on November 21.

The death of Kurdish woman Mahsa Amini in custody in September after she allegedly refused to comply with hijab rules sparked outrage among Iranian women, followed by what Open Stadiums describes as a "brutal clampdown by the regime".

In its open letter to FIFA, the group also pointed to Sahar Khodayari, the woman known as 'Blue Girl', who attempted to attend a football game dressed as a man in 2019 but was spotted and arrested for flouting hijab rules. She died by suicide, reportedly because she expected to be sent to prison.

Open Stadiums said there was a clear ongoing case of "government interference", with a number of sports journalists and photographers "arrested and left in solitary confinement with no charges brought against them", and a footballer and fan group leader killed by Iranian authorities.

FIFA rules do not allow governments to wade into sporting matters. Open Stadiums claims the Iranian FA "remains untouched and seemingly beyond reproach by FIFA", and described the country's football authority as both "an accomplice of the crimes of the regime" and "a direct threat to the security of female fans in Iran and wherever our national team plays in the world".

The group fears Iranian women who travel to the Qatar 2022 finals will be kept "in check" by travelling undercover state agents, warning of possible revenge on women's rights activists and female football fans following the tournament.

"That is why, as Iranian football fans, it is with an extremely heavy heart that we have to raise our deepest concern about Iran's participation in the upcoming FIFA World Cup," the group said in its letter to Infantino.

"Why would FIFA give the Iranian state and its representatives a global stage, while it not only refuses to respect basic human rights and dignities, but is currently torturing and killing its own people? Where are the principles of FIFA's statutes in this regard?

"Therefore, we ask FIFA ... to immediately expel Iran from the World Cup 2022 in Qatar.

"The Islamic Republic's authorities and its football federation must not be given the honour of participating in football's finest tournament while it is killing its citizens on our streets.

"Mr Infantino, FIFA needs to act now to protect Iran's dedicated and passionate female football fans."

Eddie Howe has no interest in succeeding Gareth Southgate as England manager, with a move into the international game not appealing "at this moment in my life".

Three Lions boss Southgate has been hugely successful since his appointment in 2016, leading his team to the World Cup semi-finals, Nations League Finals and Euro 2020 final, but he heads into Qatar 2022 under pressure.

England are winless in six – their worst such sequence since 1993 and worst ever heading into a major tournament – and there have been calls for Southgate to move on.

As one of the leading English coaches in the Premier League, Newcastle United's Howe would appear an obvious candidate to replace him.

However, while praising Southgate, Howe said the England role was not one he would be interested in "in the short term", with his focus on Newcastle.

"I think Gareth's done an incredible job, I really do," Howe said on Friday. "I mean that from the bottom of my heart.

"I've been lucky enough to go in and see him work, I've spent time with him. I've got a lot of time for him and for Steve Holland and his team there.

"I think they've been amazing for England. I think you have to remember where England [were] when he took over and what he's done for the country.

"I never say never, I never say, 'no, it's not something I'd be interested in'. But certainly not in the short term. It's not on my radar at all. It's all Newcastle and investing and trying to make this team the best I can."

Explaining why that might be, Howe added: "I've always said I love the day-to-day coaching. I love being with my players on the training ground.

"In international football, you get that taken away for long periods. At this moment in my life, that's not something I want to do."

Howe still had an interest in England's Nations League matches against Italy and Germany, with Nick Pope starting in goal and Newcastle team-mate Kieran Trippier on Southgate's bench.

Pope, deputising for Jordan Pickford, made an awful error in the Germany game that gifted the visitors an equaliser at Wembley after England had recovered from two goals down to lead 3-2.

"[Pope] is in a good place," Howe said ahead of Saturday's game at Fulham. "He's aware how special those games are for him in his career.

"From where he's come from, to experience those moments is brilliant. But he's earned the right to get to the position in his career that he's at."

Howe described himself as "very proud" of Pope and backed his goalkeeper to recover.

"You need to be able to deal with mistakes. It's part of the job when you're in that position," the Newcastle coach added.

"Nick is a very calm, level-headed guy. He's incredibly focused. I've got no problem with him returning; I know he'll carry on where he left off for us."

Giovanni Reyna is expected to return to action within 10 days despite suffering a muscle strain on international duty, handing the United States a welcome boost ahead of the World Cup.

Reyna was substituted during the first half of the USA's goalless draw with Saudi Arabia earlier this week, after which it was revealed he had suffered from "muscle tightness".

His exit from that match – his country's final friendly ahead of November's trip to Qatar – set alarm bells ringing, particularly given Reyna missed much of last season with similar muscle injuries.

But Borussia Dortmund head coach Edin Terzic moved to allay fears of another long-term absence on Thursday, stating: "Gio has a strain and will be out for seven to 10 days. We hope he is available to play following the Sevilla game on Wednesday."

Terzic was also able to offer a positive update on Marco Reus' fitness after the BVB captain was injured in a 1-0 win over local rivals Schalke earlier this month.

"In Marco Reus' case, the injury is fortunately not as bad as first feared," Terzic added. "We hope he will be able to slowly ease his way back into team training after the weekend." 

Dortmund have won five and lost two of their first seven Bundesliga games this campaign to trail surprise leaders Union Berlin by two points.

Qatar's World Cup organising committee says sportswear maker Hummel is "trivialising" efforts to improve conditions for migrant workers after revealing Denmark's toned-down kit in protest at the issue.

Hummel, which is the Danish football team's long-term kit supplier, released the side's 2022 World Cup jerseys on Wednesday, including a black third-choice design which is described as the "colour of mourning", to honour migrant workers who died during construction work for the tournament.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) promised in November its teams would wear clothing with "critical messages" at the World Cup, and while FIFA rules prohibit political statements, the team uniform is a major change to their iconic kits.

The three Denmark kits are all-red, all-white and all-black, with their iconic white chevrons faded into the same single colour as the shirt.

"This shirt carries with it a message," Hummel said. "We don't wish to be visible during a tournament that has cost thousands of people their lives.

"We support the Danish national team all the way, but that isn't the same as supporting Qatar as a host nation."

Qatar's organising group, the Qatar Supreme Committee (QSC), responded to the kit release by disputing Hummel's claims, arguing it trivialised a "genuine commitment to protect the health and safety" of migrant workers, estimated to be around 30,000, largely from South Asia.

Qatar claims that three labourers died in work-related accidents during construction work for the World Cup, although the nation has been accused of under-reporting deaths with limited data released by authorities, with Hummel's statement claiming it was "thousands".

"We dispute Hummel's claim that this tournament has cost thousands of people their lives," the QSC statement said.

"Furthermore, we wholeheartedly reject the trivialising [of] our genuine commitment to protect the health and safety of the 30,000 workers who built FIFA World Cup stadiums and other tournament projects.

"Like every country, progress on these issues is a journey without a finish line, and Qatar is committed to that journey.

"We urge the DBU to accurately convey the outcome of their extensive communication and work with the Supreme Committee, and to ensure that this is accurately communicated to their partners at Hummel."

Qatar's World Cup organising committee says sportswear maker Hummel is "trivializing" their efforts to improve conditions for migrant workers after revealing Denmark's toned-down kit in protest at the issue.

Hummel, who are the Danish football team's long-term kit supplier, released the side's 2022 World Cup jerseys on Wednesday, including a black third-choice design which is the "color of mourning", to honour the migrant workers who died during construction work for the tournament.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) promised in November to wear clothing with "critical messages" at the World Cup and while FIFA rules prohibit political statements, the team uniform is a major change to their iconic kits.

The three Denmark kits are all-red, all-white and all-black, with their iconic white chevrons faded into the same single colour as the shirt.

"This shirt carries with it a message," Hummel said. "We don't wish to be visible during a tournament that has cost thousands of people their lives.

"We support the Danish national team all the way, but that isn't the same as supporting Qatar as a host nation."

Qatar's organising group, the Qatar Supreme Committee (QSC), responded to the kit release by disputing Hummel's claims, arguing it trivialised their "genuine commitment to protect the health and safety" of migrant workers, estimated to be around 30,000, largely from South Asia.

Qatar claims that three labourers died in work-related accidents during construction work for the World Cup, although the nation has been accused of under reporting deaths with limited data released by authorities, with Hummel's statement claiming it was "thousands".

"We dispute Hummel's claim that this tournament has cost thousands of people their lives," the QSC statement said.

"Furthermore, we wholeheartedly reject the trivialising (of) our genuine commitment to protect the health and safety of the 30,000 workers who built FIFA World Cup stadiums and other tournament projects.

"Like every country, progress on these issues is a journey without a finish line, and Qatar is committed to that journey.

"We urge the DBU to accurately convey the outcome of their extensive communication and work with the Supreme Committee, and to ensure that this is accurately communicated to their partners at Hummel."

Qatar's World Cup organising committee says sportswear maker Hummel is "trivializing" their efforts to improve conditions for migrant workers after revealing Denmark's toned-down kit in protest at the issue.

Hummel, who are the Danish football team's long-term kit supplier, released the side's 2022 World Cup jerseys on Wednesday, including a black third-choice design which is the "color of mourning", to honour the migrant workers who died during construction work for the tournament.

The Danish Football Association (DBU) promised in November to wear clothing with "critical messages" at the World Cup and while FIFA rules prohibit political statements, the team uniform is a major change to their iconic kits.

The three Denmark kits are all-red, all-white and all-black, with their iconic white chevrons faded into the same single colour as the shirt.

"This shirt carries with it a message," Hummel said. "We don't wish to be visible during a tournament that has cost thousands of people their lives.

"We support the Danish national team all the way, but that isn't the same as supporting Qatar as a host nation."

Qatar's organising group, the Qatar Supreme Committee (QSC), responded to the kit release by disputing Hummel's claims, arguing it trivialised their "genuine commitment to protect the health and safety" of migrant workers, estimated to be around 30,000, largely from South Asia.

Qatar claims that three labourers died in work-related accidents during construction work for the World Cup, although the nation has been accused of under reporting deaths with limited data released by authorities, with Hummel's statement claiming it was "thousands".

"We dispute Hummel's claim that this tournament has cost thousands of people their lives," the QSC statement said.

"Furthermore, we wholeheartedly reject the trivialising (of) our genuine commitment to protect the health and safety of the 30,000 workers who built FIFA World Cup stadiums and other tournament projects.

"Like every country, progress on these issues is a journey without a finish line, and Qatar is committed to that journey.

"We urge the DBU to accurately convey the outcome of their extensive communication and work with the Supreme Committee, and to ensure that this is accurately communicated to their partners at Hummel."

Anthony Gordon insists he was never "desperate to leave Everton" after being linked with a move to Chelsea in the recent transfer window.

Reports claimed Chelsea were willing to pay up to £60million to prise the 21-year-old away from Goodison Park, while Tottenham and Newcastle United were also rumoured to be interested.

However, the move never materialised and Gordon has enjoyed a promising start to the season for the Toffees, scoring twice in their opening seven matches.

And while the forward expected speculation over a possible exit, he was never the one pushing for a move.

"That's [speculation] part and parcel of football," Gordon told reporters.

"When you're doing well there's always going to be speculation. But the place is so good that it's never been a case of being desperate to leave Everton.

"We're in a completely different place to last year. It's class, the morale is unbelievable and I couldn't speak highly enough of it. We've made really good signings, people and players. There's just a feel-good [feeling] around the place.

"I like playing with pressure. I feel I thrive on it. If I want to be a top player, I have to do that regardless. I feel I’ve handled it well, but I can still score more goals and stuff."

Gordon featured for England Under-21s against Germany on Tuesday, playing a part in two goals in a 3-1 victory.

And Gordon's sights are firmly set on making the squad for the senior side's upcoming World Cup campaign, even if he accepts he has plenty of work to do.

He added: "If I didn't have that ambition [to make the squad for Qatar], I'd be a bit stupid.

"They're always auditions, particularly in the Under-21s. But I understand the squad is so good it's going to be tough to get in.

"I'm 100 per cent focused on making the World Cup squad. If it doesn't happen, it's out of my control but I'll give it my best try. To get there, I'm going to need to score a lot of goals but I'm ready for the challenge and hopeful."

Former Germany defender Jerome Boateng has laughed off criticism of the national team ahead of the World Cup in Qatar, joking there are "80 million national coaches".

Germany's 3-3 Nations League draw with England on Monday meant they finished third in Group A3, having won just one of their six matches.

Their shaky recent performances and failure to reach the Nations League's final four have led to questions being asked of manager Hansi Flick.

But Boateng, who played 76 times for Germany between 2009 and 2018, believes fans should reserve judgement of the team until the World Cup is over.

"Shortly before the World Cup we have 80 million national coaches again," Boateng wrote in an Instagram story, alongside a laughing emoji.

"We have a strong team, we can beat any opponent and become world champions. We have young players in all positions.

"How about approaching the World Cup in a positive way and not criticising the team and bringing in unrest?

"Stay positive and support the team together. After the World Cup you can add your two cents again."

Italy coach Roberto Mancini is already targeting World Cup glory in 2026, as the Azzurri prepare to "suffer" through this year's tournament after failing to qualify.

The European champions will be the most high-profile side to miss the tournament in Qatar after slipping to a humiliating play-off defeat to North Macedonia in March.

Italy were also absent from Russia in 2018 following a play-off loss to Sweden, meaning their exile from football's most storied competition will stretch to a minimum of 12 years.

The Azzurri also suffered group-stage exits in 2010 and 2014, meaning their most recent World Cup knockout tie remains 2006's final victory over France.

Mancini, however, is determined to end Italy's World Cup woes when the tournament heads to the United States, Mexico and Canada in four years' time, and believes their failure to reach Qatar was unjust. 

"Winning with the national team is the best thing there can be," he said at an event in Rome. 

"Giving Italians such joy is incredible, now we have to wait four years. We will aim to win the next World Cup in America.

"We are working, unfortunately we will suffer until December - the disappointment of not qualifying for the World Cup does not pass me. 

"It was totally unfair, but the defeats must be faced. We did not deserve to stay out of the World Cup, but unfortunately, that's how it went."

Asked why he chose to continue as Italy coach following their play-off embarrassment, the former Manchester City boss added: "Honestly, I don't know, at that moment I just wanted to turn the page because it went badly. 

"But winning the European Championship gives an incredible joy. Now we have to wait a few years and then we want to try for those emotions again."

Italy have since salvaged some pride by winning their Nations League group, finishing above Hungary, Germany and England to reach next year's finals.

And Mancini was keen to emphasise the difficulty of that achievement, adding: "It wasn't easy, the boys put everything in. 

"England are a danger to win the World Cup, they have an incredible squad and Hungary are a very physical team."

Italy will contest friendlies against Albania and Austria when elite club football pauses for the World Cup in November. 

Declan Rice has described Jude Bellingham as "the future of English football", claiming his international midfield partner is the most talented 19-year-old he has ever seen.

Although England suffered relegation from the top tier of the Nations League last week, Bellingham has done no harm to his chances of starting at the upcoming World Cup during the international break. 

With Manchester City's Kalvin Phillips enduring an injury-blighted campaign, Bellingham started alongside Rice in matches against Italy and Germany, impressing in a box-to-box role.

In Monday's 3-3 draw with Germany, Bellingham led England's charts for passes completed (41), touches (67), touches in the opposition box (six), duels won (eight), tackles won, interceptions and fouls won (all three).

Rice believes the Borussia Dortmund star's all-round ability is unique for someone of his age, telling the Daily Mirror: "I don't think I've seen anyone as good as he is for 19.

"I look at a lot of 19-year-olds, whether it's at a club, around the world, around the country. To have the whole package is a hard thing and I feel like he's got that.

"He's 19 but he's got the body of a 28-year-old – he's a man. He thinks like a man, plays like a man and shows personality and character. 

"I've been around and played so many more games than he has in my career, but you can just tell as a 19-year-old what he brings to the team already, the energy he's got.

"He can play in a holding role, he can play as an eight, he can play as a 10.

"He's a man – you can see it when he plays for Dortmund. As a 19-year-old, you're normally scared to talk to the referee but he's in the referee's face demanding answers, demanding decisions and he leaves himself on the pitch constantly. 

"He really pushes you on the pitch. We push each other on and it's a privilege to play next to him.

"Every time I play with Jude, we're building that connection and I say to him; 'you go and bomb on and do your attacking stuff and I'll sit here and defend for you'. So we're getting that good connection, he's great to play with.

"Hopefully, he keeps flourishing. He's the future of English football to come for the next 15 years."

While Bellingham's individual displays have earned rave reviews, England will begin the World Cup – against Iran on November 21 – having gone six games without a win (D3 L3).

This is their longest such run going into a major tournament, but Rice believes the Three Lions were much improved against Germany, adding: "We're sticking with a formation that needs work and we're working on that in training all the time. 

"I feel like there's positive signs there. It's just a blip at the moment but that was a massive, positive step."

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