The club and the country have recently overlooked the South American playmaker, and two managers had to be convinced of its value
James Rodriguez is currently in disfavor with the club and the country, and the Everton player is warned by Colombia coach Reinaldo Rueda that he must reach ‘500%’ to get back into his plans.
It could be a struggle for the South American, as he stays on the edge of Rafa Benitez’s plans at Goodison Park, without taking competition minutes for the Toffees this season.
Nigging beat disappointed James, which led to his omission by Colombia, and Rueda – who saw a word fight erupt when the 30-year-old was removed from the Copa America plans this summer – says “100% is not enough” to earn favors again.
What was said?
Rueda told reporters of James’ situation: “It is not only the healing of an injury, but also the readjustment of the competition.
‘I think it’s very clear, we can not hurt James or the national team; if we saw him at his best, we want him, if he’s 500%, because 100% is not enough for the national team.
“We always tell the players to be at 500%, that’s what it takes to be in the Colombian national team.
“We want the players to take care of themselves in all possible variables. The 500% involves a number of factors and variables.”
Will James see the playing time at Everton?
James completed a move to Everton in the summer of 2020 when he was reunited with former Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti on Merseyside
Questions were raised about his suitability for English football during a Test debut campaign, and a supportive coach has now returned to the Santiago Bernabeu.
During the summer transfer window, a move was made elsewhere Benitez was aware of his plans, but no agreement was reached and James stayed with the Toffees.
Rueda says minutes will be needed before he can consider choosing a national icon, and it is clear that the current situation needs to change for all involved.
“Everything is going to happen because of his current situation,” Rueda added.
“To the extent that James can play, have a better current situation, it’s good for us, for Everton, for him and for the national team.
“You want players to play regularly, to have the continuity, the rhythm for the competition.”