The former Everton man has started the past three international matches on the bench after his full 90 against France on November and has indicated that it may be a fourth in a row as a substitute as he attempts to displace Chelsea's John Terry and Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand.
"It's going to be hard," he admitted.
"They're two of the best in the world and they've been doing it for a number of years so it's no easy task. If it was, we wouldn't be the force we are at international level.
"If I can apply myself well, stay in the City team playing in the Champions League, I'll be ready to do well when called upon."