Fikayo Tomori hopes man-of-the-match display against Tottenham boosts England squad hopes

Fikayo Tomori hopes man-of-the-match display against Tottenham boosts England squad hopes

Fikayo Tomori hopes a man-of-the-match performance to help knock Tottenham out of the Champions League will boost his chances of a return to the England squad this month.

Last night’s dour goalless draw in north London secured AC Milan’s passage through to the quarter-finals, with the Italian champions 1-0 winning on aggregate.

Tomori kept Harry Kane quiet on the night and was rewarded by UEFA for his performance, which was much improved after a nightmare double-header against former club Chelsea earlier in the season.

The centre-back was left out of the World Cup 2022 squad but hopes his improved displays have impressed Gareth Southgate enough to include him in the group for the upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers against Italy and Ukraine.

Fikayo Tomori celebrating last night’s win. (AFP via Getty Images)
Fikayo Tomori celebrating last night’s win. (AFP via Getty Images)

“There was a disappointment not going to the World Cup but that's football, you just have to move on,” he said. “Nights like this, after the work we have done the whole season at Milan, this is what I play football for.

“Day-to-day I am not thinking about the national team. I am focused on Milan. Whatever happens with the national team happens.”

Tomori, who made his senior England debut in 2019 and has in total earned three caps, stays in regular contact with Southgate throughout the season.

He said: “Especially when I moved to Milan, he messaged me and spoke to me about it and when we used to go to the camps he would speak to me about how it was going. With him being a central defender, it was interesting to talk. He has always kept in contact and we will see what happens next week.”

Tomori spent 16 years at Chelsea, first in the academy and then the first-team squad, enjoying most of his success under Frank Lampard’s stewardship. He was loaned out by Thomas Tuchel to Milan, who triggered their £25 million option to buy in June 2021.

“Over the two legs we were the better side,” Tomori said. “Especially against a strong team like Tottenham, I am really happy with the result.”

He added: “We are in it to win it. I don't think we are here to make up the numbers, especially now we're in the quarter-finals. We know when we play at our maximum then we can definitely do well, whichever team we play.”