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Cork backs Ings for England recall ahead of Burnley’s trip to Southampton

Jack Cork has backed Danny Ings for an England recall ahead of Burnley’s reunion with their former striker.

Ings, who won his only cap in 2015, has been in brilliant form for Southampton this season, scoring 17 goals in all competitions.

With Harry Kane currently injured and Jamie Vardy ruling himself out of contention, there has been a swell of support for Ings being included in Gareth Southgate’s set-up.

Cork said: “Fair play to Danny, he’s been great. He’s scored a lot of goals for Southampton. You look at what he’s done for that club this season and you put a lot of it down to him.

“Looking at international things for him, there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be included.”

Cork has never played with Ings but the pair have a shared history of having represented Burnley and Saints, and will lock horns on Saturday when the Clarets travel to St Mary’s.

Cork played for Southampton for four years between 2011 and 2015 – the same period when Ings was at Burnley.

The midfielder said: “I’ve been back a few times since and I always get a good reception. There are three of us that have had links with Burnley and Southampton – me, Jay Rodriguez and Danny.

“It’s always nice when you go back to your old ground, especially when you left on good terms. It’ll be nice to see some old faces and try to get a result.”

Rodriguez had to bide his time after returning to his boyhood club in the summer but, with Ashley Barnes sidelined following a hernia operation, the 30-year-old has taken his chance to impress.

Rodriguez has started the last four matches, scoring a stunning goal in the victory over Manchester United, and is certain to be in the starting line-up again on Saturday.

Cork revealed he played a key role in Rodriguez’s departure from Turf Moor in 2012, when he joined Southampton, before making his way back to Lancashire via West Brom.

“Jay is someone that I’ve known for a long time, since I was first here at Burnley,” said Cork.

“When I first came 10 years ago he was just a young lad coming through but you could see that he had something special about him. As soon as they put him in, in the Championship he was unbelievable.

“He can do everything; he can carry the ball, he can run behind, he can jump, he can hold it, he can shoot from 30 yards, he can score from two yards. He’s just a very good all-round player.

“I remember when I was at Southampton, when I moved down there, I said if there’s one player you want to sign then you’ve got to try and sign Jay Rodriguez.

“They didn’t manage to sign him in the first season we got promoted then managed to sign him in the second window.

“He’s somebody who is really good to have around. He’s a really good guy and a good friend. He’s a person that suits the football club.”