Ross Barkley believes that he and Dele Alli can play together effectively in the same England team.
Barkley is likely to be in Roy Hodgson’s squad for the European Championship this summer but may find his starting opportunities restricted by Alli, who has enjoyed a stellar campaign with Tottenham.
Many have compared the competition between Barkley and Alli to the conundrum England often faced with Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard in the side.
Numerous England bosses attempted to find a suitable system in which to utilise both the Liverpool and Chelsea midfielders at the same time, but a solution was never found and the two rarely combined effectively on the international scene.
Barkley, however, believes that he and Alli can work together in the same team, and that there may be occasions when two attacking midfielders are needed.
He told FourFourTwo: “I definitely believe we (him and Alli) can play together if asked, in this tournament and in the future.
“It’s up to Roy what he sees in each game, whether he needs both of us, or one attacking midfielder with a bit of balance.
“I feel more important to the squad now, and more confident when I go into England camps because I’ve played over 20 games. I think I’ve matured as a player since the World Cup.
Barkley has at times been compared to Paul Gascoigne, a comparison the 22-year-old certainly welcomes.
“I’ve watched clips of him playing against the Netherlands and Scotland, because I like the way he played,” Barkley added. “He was unbelievable in that tournament. He was the complete player.
“It means a lot that people say that (I’m like Gascoigne). Gazza is a legend of English football because of the type of player he was.
“He liked being on the ball, he liked dribbling, and he scored some unbelievable goals. It’s similar to what I like to do.
“I don’t deliberately look to play like anyone else, though.”
On John Stones, Barkley said: “Yes (he can captain England). At a young age he’s a leader at club level – he talks a lot and leads by example.
“He’s not your typical English defender, he’s more of a ball-playing centre-half, and at international level that’s what you need from your central defenders, as well as being solid at the back.
“He’s the type of player you would normally see in a Spanish side. He’s an unbelievable player, he’ll probably play for England for the next 10 or 15 years and reach over 100 caps.”