Former England footballer Martin Keown thinks Harry Kane’s recent injury opens the door for Jamie Vardy to come out of international retirement ahead of this summer’s European Championships.
Kane has been ruled out until April following the torn hamstring he suffered away at Southampton for Spurs in early January.
Speaking on TalkSPORT, Keown was asked how Gareth Southgate should deal with the issue of his captain’s absence and told host Jim White that it could be the perfect opportunity for the in-form Leicester City striker to return to the international scene.
Vardy stood down from international duty following the 2018 World Cup campaign and has seen his club form flourish since, topping the Premier League’s goalscoring charts at the turn of the year with 17 strikes to his name.
Keown feels Southgate should turn to him while Kane spends time on the sidelines, saying: “Maybe it’s one of those where Jamie Vardy – you pick up the phone and say ‘there could be a pathway through for you, now’.
“17 goals in the Premier League this season, I’ve not seen Jamie Vardy play this well. He’s clinical, ruthless.
“I think Vardy wants to be with his family, we understand that. You know you’re playing second fiddle to Harry Kane going to a major tournament. He can’t live the dream in the way he wants to but maybe now, he can.
“There are options, but I think [Southgate] needs to strongly consider taking Jamie Vardy out of retirement.”
If Southgate was to convince Vardy to return to the Three Lions setup, you would imagine he would have a pivotal role to play in the upcoming finals for it to be a worthwhile comeback. However, given Kane is due to return well before Euro 2020 kicks off in June, perhaps now would not be the time to put such a plan into action.
Keown suggests himself that Vardy may not be satisfied being second-choice to the Spurs striker at the tournament, so perhaps even he would be of the opinion that with both strikers fit, the Leicester hitman may not be an available option for Southgate, despite his impressive form. Therefore, it seems that such a scenario would be most likely if either Vardy was a guaranteed starter or Kane’s fitness issues persist into the summer months.
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