James Maddison takes dig at PR companies who are infiltrating football and lifts lid on infamous casino visit

Leicester City’s James Maddison has taken a swipe at PR firms who are becoming more and more popular among top-flight, elite level football.

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Maddison, 23, joined Leicester City from Norwich in 2018 in a transfer which cost the Foxes a modest £22.5m, as per Transfermarkt.

Since his arrival at the King Power two-years ago, the talented English midfielder has gone on to feature in 87 matches in all competitions and has been directly involved in an impressive 32 goals.

It isn’t just domestically that Leicester City’s Maddison is turning heads though, after receiving his first senior international call up in October 2018, the 23-year-old went on to score his first goal for England against Croatia just six-months later.

However, the talented creative midfielder has not always had an easy ride of things after he became subject to criticism following a visit to a casino at the back end of last year.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with the Daily Mail, Maddison has opened up on that casino visit as he continues to put the ‘something and nothing’ saga well behind him, he said: “That [casino visit] was nothing.

“I was withdrawn from the squad because I was ill and a couple of days later I felt better.

“I went and watched the game and had a game of cards because that’s a hobby of mine and it was magnified to a level it should never have been. I was picked in the next squad and I made my debut.

“You have to be careful, especially with social media and camera phones, but whether I’m picked for England will purely be about football reasons.

“I watch England now and I know there’s a gap for me. I know I can go and make an impact on the international stage; it’s just about being patient.

“I’ve had a taste and I want more. Look at Jack Grealish — before the Belgium game he had never made a competitive start, and then he was the best player on the pitch.

“It’s about taking that chance and I know I’m capable. Hopefully it will come around soon.”

Maddison also drew attention to the constant trend of PR agencies’ influence on modern sport.

The 23-year-old Englishman has slammed the PR agencies who continue to make their way into top-level football with their latest example of infiltration revealed after Leeds United sign with specialist agency RocNation, who are best known for looking after Man United’s Marcus Rashford.

Leicester City’s Maddison has opened up on what he thinks of PR firms, he said: “I won’t be employing a PR company any time soon.

“I am James Maddison — I don’t want someone else to be James Maddison for me.

“I watch interviews with other people in sport and they’re so scripted and boring, just the same thing.

“That’s OK, as everyone is different, but I want to showcase who I am, whether you meet me on the street, come to the training ground or watch me play.”

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