Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Outcasts Will Play Lead Role for Sven

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Outcasts Will Play Lead Role for Sven

Article excerpt

Byline: KEN DYER

ENGLAND coach Sven-Goran Eriksson said today that Andy Cole and Robbie Fowler will play a major part in tomorrow's friendly against Holland.

Both men were omitted from Sunday's Charity Shield at the Millennium Stadium, Fowler dropped by Liverpool manager Gerard Houllier after a training ground bust-up with No2 Phil Thompson, while Cole was left out because his wife was ill.

But Eriksson has reassured both players they may "play more than 45 minutes" at White Hart Lane.

He said: "Because they did not play over the weekend they are much fresher.

It is likely I will play them for more than 45 minutes."

Eriksson said he believed England have a "beautiful" future, but said that although beating the Dutch was desirable, "the important thing is getting through the game with no injuries".

Eriksson confirmed most of his players would get a run-out against the Dutch and said Bayern Munich midfielder Owen Hargreaves will definitely figure.

" These friendlies are useful because we can practise - we get to know what to do when we attack and defend. Most of the players will only play for 45 minutes. I do not have a first team or a second team in mind this time.

"More or less all of them will figure at some stage. I liked Hargreaves when I saw him twice live last season and then a couple of times on television. He is fit, quick, can play football and is keen to learn how to do things. He will be a very useful player for the future for England."

Eriksson, who today allowed injured Emile Heskey and Nicky Butt to pull out of the squad, acknowledged the concerns of club managers w ho will be hoping their players come through tomorrow's game unscathed ahead of the big Premiership kick-off on Saturday.

He said: "Of course I understand the managers - but it's not a problem for me to not play 11 players for 90 minutes."

The England coach revealed he has not asked Fowler how he feels about the striker's situation at Liverpool.

Fowler did not play in Sunday's Charity Shield win over Manchester United and speculation is linking him with a move away from Anfield.

But Eriksson said: "I don't think Robbie Fowler has anything to prove - we all know what kind of player he is. …

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