Mark Noble’s lack of international recognition is a topic that annoys many West Ham fans. The Irons’ midfield hero has been a mainstay in their XI for the best part of 10 years now, performing consistently and effectively, yet he’s not received a single England cap. It’s not as if the Three Lions have been blessed with talent in this spell, and it gets even harder to justify his exclusion when the likes of Ryan Mason, Tom Cleverley and even teenager Dele Alli have been drafted in and given chances.
It seems to be a club-bias on the part of the national side, but if Noble is ever going to break that glass ceiling his best chance is now:
As the stats, processed by OuLaLa.com, show, the Hammers captain has been out-performing many of his England rivals in just about every area measurable for a central midfielder since the turn of the year. In terms of passing he’s more accurate than his rivals, more creative and more active, and he’s been mixing this with a superior tackle rate, too.
At 28, he’s surely got to be worth a go in the upcoming friendlies. If Fabian Delph gets picked ahead of him, what sort of message will that send to players impressing with less-fancied teams?