James Maddison has issued a response to the reported summer interest of Tottenham Hotspur.
Speaking to Sky Sports (via the Evening Standard) following Leicester City’s 6-2 humbling by Spurs on Saturday afternoon, the Foxes’ talisman revealed that his club breathed a sigh of relief upon the closing of the summer transfer window on September 1 – with Tottenham reportedly having been interested in a £60m move for the 25-year-old midfielder.
However, a Fabio Paratici bid for the England international would ultimately not materialise, something the Leicester hierarchy are clearly delighted about, with Maddison revealing: “After [the transfer market] shuts, I think there is a bit of a sigh of relief – especially some of the staff at football clubs.”
Considering just how impressive Maddison was against Tottenham last weekend – despite the scoreline – in addition to Paratici’s failure to land an attacking midfielder over the course of the summer transfer window, the Italian sporting director will surely have been left red-faced on Saturday evening.
Indeed, over the course of his 90 minutes on the pitch at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, the £45m-rated talent bossed the midfield, enjoying 74 touches of the ball – more than all but one of the Spurs side – completing four key passes – with no player from either team making more – finding his man with four of his six long balls and taking a remarkable seven shots at goal.
One of these attempts saw the Foxes draw level in the match, when the player who Shaun Goodwin dubbed “unreal” expertly looped Timothy Castagne’s cross over a helpless Hugo Lloris between the Spurs sticks shortly before the half-time whistle.
James Maddison’s wondrous finish sees Leicester City and Tottenham go into half-time level 🪄
A reminder for Gareth Southgate, perhaps… 🏴
— The Athletic UK (@TheAthleticUK) September 17, 2022
The £110k-per-week sensation also impressed in a defensive capacity, making a total of four tackles – more than any other player aside from Davinson Sanchez – winning seven of his ten duels – a success rate of 70% – making one interception and drawing three fouls for Brendan Rodgers’ outfit.
These returns not only saw the former Norwich City star earn an astonishing SofaScore match rating of 7.7 – with only hat-trick hero Son Heung-min and Rodrigo Bentancur receiving higher ratings than the Englishman on the day – but also saw Maddison earn a significant amount of praise on social media.
Indeed, Geoff Shreeves stated his belief that the playmaker is a “top class pro who gives everything on the pitch” after the match, Jack Johnson claimed the 25-year-old was “running the show” in the fixture and Gary Lineker suggested that the midfielder had been “superb” before adding it was “baffling” how Gareth Southgate did not include the talent in his latest England squad.
As such, with Maddison showing Paratici exactly what he missed out on at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday, the Italian must be starting to seriously regret not pulling out all the stops to bring the Leicester sensation to north London this summer.