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Monday, 14 January, 2002, 16:41 GMT
Blomqvist in World Cup frame
Everton's Jesper Blomqvist
Blomqvist has made a big impression at Goodison
Jesper Blomqvist has put himself in line for a a World Cup place with Sweden following his return to form with Everton.

Sweden scouts are set to watch Blomqvist ahead of their pre-World Cup friendly against Greece next month.

Blomqvist, 28, has made an immediate impact at Goodison after arriving from Manchester United on a free transfer in November.

The midfielder has spent the last two years out of the game with career-threatening knee problems - but he has impressed in three appearances for Everton.


I didn't expect that I would be able to play like this after so long out, but I've just felt stronger after every game
Jesper Blomqvist

He also scored his first Premiership goal since October 1998 against Sunderland on Saturday.

And Sweden coach Tommy Soderberg now plans to have Blomqvist, who has been capped 29 times, watched before the Greece match on February 13.

"We are looking at Jesper," said Soderberg. "As Niclas Alexandersson plays for Everton as well, we might go and see them in a game.

"We will decide next week which matches to see ahead of the Greece game."

The 30-year-old Alexandersson is virtually assured of a place in Sweden's squad for Japan and South Korea.

And he is backing Goodison team-mate Blomqvist for an international recall.

Everton's Jesper Blomqvist
Blomqvist will be watched with interest
"You would never know he has been out of the game for two years; he should definitely be considered for the World Cup finals," said Alexandersson.

Blomqvist admits he is surprised at the start he has made at Everton.

But he is cautious about getting carried away with thoughts of a World Cup berth.

"I wouldn't turn down a phone call," he said.

"It's nice to hear people saying I am back playing at a high level again.

"It's very early to talk about the World Cup, but things are going well so far.

"I didn't expect that I would be able to play like this after so long out, but I've just felt stronger after every game."

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