Adam Lallana is taking nothing for granted in a bid to gate-crash England’s squad for next year’s World Cup finals.
The Saints skipper impressed again in only his second game for the Three Lions against Germany on Tuesday, with England manager Roy Hodgson labelling him as “a great find”.
A 76-minute run-out against the Germans at Wembley suggests that the Saints star’s credentials are being taken seriously over the coming weeks and months.
“I hope so,” Adam said when asked if he thought he’d helped his own cause on Tuesday. “It doesn’t help with the disappointing results, but I felt that we imposed ourselves a lot better on this game.
“We were unlucky to go in 1-0 down because we created chances, but it just didn’t quite fall for us in and around the box and we conceded a disappointing goal.
“It was a different challenge and a different game,” he assessed of Germany, “but obviously still another disappointing result.
“I feel that I’ve learnt a lot from these last two games – a lot about international football and what it’s about – so I’ll take a lot back to my club with me.
“I’ve learned a tremendous amount and it’s where I want to be playing so it’s given me even more drive to go back to my club and keep trying every week. I’m desperate to be involved in the next squad and get to Brazil.”
Lallana added that he’ll take cherished memories from his time away with the senior side over the past two weeks, and the midfielder recalled his emotions when stepping out onto the pitch to start in both games.
“It made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up, especially walking out into a packed Wembley,” he described.
“It’s what I’ve dreamt of my whole life and to get two caps against two very tough opponents here at Wembley is a proud moment for my family.
“But I don’t want that to be it – I want there to be more and, as I said, apart from the disappointing results I will take a lot back with me.
“It’s not just the quality of those that are around you, it’s the opponents as well,” continued the 25-year-old. “It proves that international football is the pinnacle and it is where the best football in the world is played.
“It’s been a pleasure training and working with these top, top players day-in-day-out so I feel I can take a lot back with me and impose it on Southampton, where hopefully we can keep playing well.”
Club matters take an immediate return to the capital for Saturday’s trip to Arsenal, and Lallana admits he is already excited for that particular contest.
“We’ve got a tough game at the weekend and I’m thoroughly looking forward to that,” he beamed.
“We’ve got a busy December coming up, so I’m happy that I’m fully-fit. I’m just really looking forward to getting in amongst it this weekend at the Emirates.
“It’s a massive game. It’s top versus third so why can’t we go there and a get a result?
“We’ve done it at Old Trafford and at Anfield already this season, so the lads will be full of confidence and I’m really looking forward to it.”