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  • Nickname:Three Lions
  • Founded: 1872
  • Manager:Roy Hodgson
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Cole stays focused

27 Jun 2006 - 08:09:40

England star Joe Cole is looking forward to playing Portugal in the World Cup quarter-finals on Saturday and is confident of reaching the last four of the tournament.

The Chelsea star thinks England's performances are improving all the time and is expecting further progress against Luis Felipe Scolari's side in Gelsenkirchen.

"We know we're going to have to play really well to beat Portugal but people shouldn't forget we haven't conceded a goal in open play and we're defending really well as a team," Cole told the FA's official website.

"I thought there were some positives against Ecuador. We should have scored more goals in the second half but we're in the quarter-finals of the World Cup.

"We're not singing from the rooftops but we're mentally very focused and ready for the next match.

"The only thing which matters is that we're in those quarter-finals. We're not up in the clouds playing wonder football, we're not going to get mugged that way. But we're focused. We know there are still things to improve on but we're getting better and better each game.

"The result is what it's all about. We could have played brilliantly and be packing our bags. Give us some credit. We played a good side in Ecuador. They've beaten Argentina and Brazil in their qualifying tournament.

"We did it in the heat and humidity, paced ourselves better this time, showed good fitness and got the job done."


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