Ex-Newcastle forward Nile Ranger has hardly helped himself during a controversial career.
After breaking through as a raw, promising talent at St James' Park, off-the-field issues got the better of the London-born striker and he left the club by mutual consent in March 2013.
With the European Championships rapidly approaching for England this summer, the troubled forward - who has been without a club since turning out for Blackpool last season - has made an extraordinary claim.
Ranger believes if he had stayed clear of trouble, that he would be challenging for a place in the Three Lions set-up alongside former England youth teammate Danny Welbeck.
Ranger told The Sun: "I feel like if I had behaved myself, I’d be up there with them.
“Sometimes I watch Newcastle and know I’d definitely be playing right now, especially with how things are going for them. There are times where I have seen them play and thought: ‘I can do better than that.’
“But I can’t always hold on to that because it is done now.”
Ranger has managed just 17 goals in 117 senior career appearances with his most prolific season coming at Swindon in League One back in 2013-14. And, still, 10 goals in 28 games in England's third-tier is hardly breathing down Wayne Rooney's neck.
However, Ranger appears to have unbreakable self-confidence.
“Even though I have my baggage and my past, I am established and I am a good footballer,” he added.
“I am a natural-born talent. Everyone makes mistakes - I’ve just made more than others. But now I am ready to settle down."
Well, now that Ranger is ready to settle down, is he good enough to climb back to the Premier League? Or, has there never been a more ludicrous claim? Tell us now!
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