Rodriguez targets England return after injury nightmare

Southampton forward Jay Rodriguez aims to force his way back into the England squad after returning from injury.

Jay Rodriguez is targeting an international recall this season after making a goalscoring return during pre-season with Southampton.

The forward spent almost 15 months on the sidelines after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament in April 2014, an injury that saw him miss out of England's World Cup squad.

Rodriguez's form in 2013-14, scoring 15 Premier League goals, saw him handed his international debut by Roy Hodgson against Chile in November 2013.

The injury put his England career on hold but, after scoring twice in his first appearance under Ronald Koeman in a friendly this week, the 25-year-old aims to put himself back into contention for the national team.

"As a player, you always want to play international level, so obviously for myself I want to try and become the player I was and obviously try and push my way back into the team," he told the Daily Echo.

"It's just a case of, first thing, playing well and feeling good in myself in the games and then hopefully something will happen.

"I have my own personal goals that I want to achieve. I always set myself a goal at the start of the season and I will just obviously stick to that, but, like I said, my main aim is to always keep improving.

"I’m very excited. I just want to keep improving as a player and keep trying to replicate what I did a couple of years ago, and hopefully I can."