James Ward-Prowse is confident he can join Tottenham pair Eric Dier and Dele Alli in the England senior squad if he impresses for Southampton.
In April Roy Hodgson admitted he planned to promote Ward-Prowse this season once he had played in the Under-21 European Championships.
But the 21-year-old had a disappointing summer tournament and was dropped after the first game as England crashed out of the group stages.
He has started half of Southampton’s Premier League games this term and, despite Dier and Alli leapfrogging him, Ward-Prowse is not giving up on a Three Lions spot.
He said: “I was made aware of it (Hodgson’s comments) and it was very nice to see but until I’m in the squad and playing for him and the first team I can’t really settle on that.
“It was nice to hear and it’s added motivation that if I can keep my performance levels for club and country I’ll make the step up.
“They (Dier and Alli) are two good friends of mine, especially Eric, and they have been in fantastic form for Tottenham.
“They’ve deserved their call-up and it’s inspiring and promising for me to know friends of mine and fellow team-mates are getting the opportunity.
“If I can replicate my form for Southampton and continue my progress for the Under-21s hopefully that will come.”
Ward-Prowse will lead Gareth Southgate’s England side out in Bosnia on Thursday as they continue their Euro 2017 qualifying campaign.
Nathan Redmond, Jordon Ibe and Joe Gomez are already ruled out with injury with Redmond personally calling Southgate to confirm his absence.
And Ward-Prowse believes there is now a greater determination to play for the Under-21s and Southgate.
He said: “You can see throughout the squad the enthusiasm to play for England, and that’s been questioned recently, but you can see with our performance levels everyone wants to put on an England shirt and do well.”