Danny Guthrie admits his return to fitness could not come at a better time after declaring himself fit for Newcastle's game against QPR on Saturday.
The midfielder, who has been out for six weeks with a groin injury, is a natural replacement for Cheick Tiote, who is now on African Cup of Nations duty with Ivory Coast.
And with his contract set to expire at the end of the season Guthrie wants to earn a new deal - and put himself in contention for senior honours with England.
"Every English player would love to play for their country," he told the Journal.
"To be honest, if I could get a run of games from now until the end of the season where I was playing as I was before I got injured I'd have to say I could get an England call-up if I was playing like that.
"I'm not trying to be big headed but seeing the players who have been called up for preliminary squads recently, I feel I might have a chance.
"I do think about stuff like that but I need to stay fit and I need to get to those levels I was at before to do it."
Guthrie said getting the injury was particularly disappointing when he was in such great form.
"It was probably the best five or six weeks that I've had here," he added. "I was finding some good form but the timing of the injury was bad.
"I was just starting to find my feet in the team, but these things happen and I just want to get back into things."