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Jol uses World Cup carrot
Martin Jol will use the lure of playing in next summer's World Cup to motivate his players over the coming months.
Bryan Ruiz (Costa Rica), Ashkan Dejagah (Iran), Maarten Stekelenburg (Holland), Derek Boateng (Ghana), Philippe Senderos (Switzerland) and Pajtim Kasami (Switzerland) are among the Fulham players who could feature in the tournament in Brazil next year.
Costa Rica captain Ruiz is clearly likely to start for his country but others will need to impress at Craven Cottage over the coming months to boost their credentials for World Cup selection.
"That is a big inspiration and I always try to use it," Jol explained. "But I try not to overuse it, because it could be a big problem if everyone wants to go to the World Cup you know.
"For example Brede (Hangeland) has got no problem with Norway, Philippe Senderos wants to have his games, he wants to play and if they don't play they've got a problem, because all these national teams and their coaches they want their players to play.
"For example with (Holland coach) Louis van Gaal, if you don't play he won't select you, so of course I use it as a motivation."
He added: "I've got Alex Kacaniklic, he's in the Sweden team and did well, Kasami has made his debut now, so of course they want to go to Brazil.
"But first they have to perform and do well."
Jol admitted though that performing in the Premier League brings pressure in any event.
"Pressure is always there because you have need pressure to compete and perform and on the other hand in the Premier League there will always be pressure to win games," he said.
Ruiz helped book Costa Rica's World Cup spot with a skilful left-footed strike across his body in the opening half of their 2-1 win over Mexico during the week, and Jol clearly hopes the 28-year-old will put in a similar performance against Crystal Palace on Monday.
But for now he is just happy the midfielder has returned injury-free along with his other foreign players.
"The only obstacle can be our fitness or people like Bryan who was on international duty. That is my only worry, how will they come back. Our medical staff do a great job however and everyone's fit. So as long as everyone's fit there's no problem, but to win games," he said.
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