Three areas Spurs star Ryan Mason could improve to win England call-up

Nathan Baker and Ryan Mason

The Tottenham Hotspur midfielder missed out on selection for England's upcoming games.

Despite speculation in the Independent that Ryan Mason may join Spurs teammate and fellow academy graduate Harry Kane in the England setup, the Tottenham call ups in Roy Hodgson's squad for the games against Lithuania and Italy were restricted to Kyle Walker, Andros Townsend and Kane.

Below we look at three areas of Mason's game he could improve in order to make the next squad Hodgson announces:

Goalscoring

The most glaring area he can improve in, Mason played further forward in the Spurs youth teams, scoring 29 times in the 2008-09 academy season that he made his debut in. Loans to Yeovil and Swindon have also demonstrated that he can find the back of the net at a pro level, but the 23-year-old has yet to make an impact in the top flight, with just one Premier League goal to his name this season. There is a glaring vacancy in the England setup for a goalscoring central midfielder, with Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard both retiring from international football, and whichever young English midfielder begins netting close to 10 goals is likely to be given a chance by Hodgson.

Passing accuracy

Mason is a little behind his midfield teammates when it comes to passing accuracy, with the Englishman boasting a percentage of 82.6% accuracy compared to the likes of Mousa Dembele (89%), Paulinho (88%), Nabil Bentaleb (85%) and Nacer Chadli (84%). Considering Mason is one of the more attacking passers in the side, his percentage isn't to be sniffed at, but it is still some way off what the best attacking central midfielders in the league are offering. Mason is certainly good enough to be achieving stats of 85% plus.

Tactical nous

Against United, Mason and Bentaleb were up against one of English football's most decorated and undervalued players in Michael Carrick. The two young midfielders really struggled to prevent the former Spurs man and his midfield partner Ander Herrera from getting on the ball and influencing the game, let alone pulling the United duo out of where they wanted to be in order to affect the game for Mauricio Pochettino's side. Tottenham completely lost the midfield battle at Old Trafford, and if the Spurs boss was clever, he would use this match and videos of the performance to illustrate to both Mason and Bentaleb how to influence games through positioning and movement. 

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