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Jamie Vardy would have started for England if he'd joined Arsenal says Stan Collymore


According to Stan Collymore, Jamie Vardy would have started for England if he'd joined Arsenal.

Jamie Vardy, Leicester City
Jamie Vardy has struggled to break into the England side despite his fine performances for Leicester

Stan Collymore, the former Liverpool forward has stated that Jamie Vardy would have been a sure starter for the England team, had he made the move to London-based club, Arsenal in the summer.

Writing in his column for the Daily Mirror, the Englishman stated, “I'm adamant that had he done so, he’d be ahead of Danny Sturridge, Wayne Rooney and even Harry Kane in the England pecking order, even if he was performing only at the same level he is for the champions.”

Summer Saga

Vardy was a reported target for Arsenal in the summer. Arsene Wenger had enquired as to the availability of the forward and had put in a £22 million bid. However, it was Vardy who finally settled the debate by opting to stay put with Leicester City.

As per Collymore, it would have been a “risky move” for Vardy to get out of his comfort zone in Leicester. However, the probable benefit for the player according to Stan would have been a starting position in the England set up.

Also read: Dropped by club and country: Is it the end of the road for Wayne Rooney?

Although it is a question of “what-ifs”, Vardy did show his loyalty to Leicester by committing his future to the club after accepting a new four-year deal. The club had brought him from Fleetwood Town in the summer of 2012 and since then the lanky forward has grown in stature.

Star names and bigger clubs’ snobbery

The former midfielder pointed out the current circumstances of the above-mentioned names. Stating how Sturridge and Rooney are no more guaranteed starters with their club sides Liverpool and Manchester United respectively, the current England coach Gareth Southgate should have gone with Vardy.

According to Collymore, there still exists a snobbish attitude around the bigger clubs in the England setup and how Vardy has suffered as a result. The 29 year old has only played 17 minutes across three World Cup qualifiers.

Complimenting the Leicester striker’s attributes of harrying his opponents and pace, Collymore went on to reiterate the importance of Champions League football and how regular exposure to such a competition would improve Vardy as a player and Arsenal as a club would have guaranteed that.

Additionally, Vardy’s leadership skills would also have been an asset to the Arsenal squad. His directness would also bring something new to the table for the Gunners squad, which has often been accused of “making too many passes in the final third”.

Although Sanchez has been the focal point of attack this season, Arsene Wenger’s side would have preferred a specialist in that position. The former midfielder pointed out that Vardy’s ability to pester opposition defences would have benefitted Ozil and Sanchez who would have gotten more time on the ball.

In conclusion, Collymore wished the England striker luck for the rest of the season and hoped that he would be able to replicate his goal scoring exploits from last season.

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