JAMES Tarkowski says he feels like the 'forgotten man' of England after being overlooked for the opening Nations League games.

The 27-year-old Clarets defender was a surprise omission from Gareth Southgate's squads for the matches against Iceland and Denmark.

Southgate's original squad selection for the double header saw Harry Maguire, Joe Gomez, Tyrone Mings and former Clarets defender Michael Keane also picked ahead of Tarkowski.

Even when Maguire was withdrawn, the England manager opted to give Wolves captain Conor Coady a first call-up.

“I do feel a little bit like I’ve been forgotten about,” Tarkowski told the Daily Telegraph.

“And that’s nothing against the lads who have been in front of me because they’ve probably had all really good seasons themselves.

"I just felt I had a really good season and the statistics looked in my favour. I was in the team that kept the second-most clean sheets, so defensively I was right up there.

“I expected to be closer than I was. Other squads, I had accepted I probably wouldn’t be involved because it was the same squad, but after the break and who was missing, maybe I just expected to be in a bit more than previously. This one was more disappointing than others.”

The defender indicated he could even contact Southgate or a member of the England camp to see what more he can do.

Tarkowski added: “I’ve thought about it myself when I’ve not made it. ‘What can I do to catch their eye?’ I wish I knew the answer, to be honest.

“Right now, the England team is away and it’s not the right time to try to speak to anybody. But maybe in the future, to try to get some feedback and see where they think I need to improve.

"My goal will still be to be involved in that tournament (the Euros) even though I have not been picked this time. I haven’t given up on that.”

Tarkowski, who joined the Clarets from Brentford 2016, has been linked with a move away from Turf Moor with West Ham United having bid around £20million for the centre back while Leicester City are also said to be interested.

But it has been reported it will take a bid in the region of the £40million Manchester City paid for Bournemouth’s Nathan Ake to prise him away.

However, Tarkowski, who has forged a solid partnership with Ben Mee in the heart of the Clarets defence, says he wants to test himself at the highest level and would love to play Champions League football.

“For me, with the age I am coming into my prime years and wanting to progress, I want to go for the top level,” said Tarkowski.

“I want to play at the best level I can, club football and internationally. I want to test myself against the best. We will see what happens. I just want to play at the top level and if that opportunity came I don’t think it is something I could turn down.

“Champions League and playing for your country, playing in big tournaments, is playing at the top level, so that’s what I would want to do if the opportunities came.”