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Joe Cole:
"First, and foremost, is that I do myself justice"
 real 14k

BBC Radio 5 Live
Mike Ingham previews fixture
 real 14k

Kevin Keegan:
"He belongs with these players with his ability and his attitude"
 real 56k

Michael Owen:
"We'll be working on certain things in the week"
 real 56k

Tuesday, 3 October, 2000, 17:56 GMT 18:56 UK
Keegan hints at role for Cole

Joe Cole looks relaxed under the media spotlight
England coach Kevin Keegan has hinted that Joe Cole could play a part in Saturday's crucial World Cup qualifying match against Germany at Wembley.

Keegan insisted the 18-year-old West Ham midfielder could handle the pressure of an England debut, though he refused to reveal whether the West Ham star will be handed a starting place.

Cole sat alongside Keegan for Tuesday's press conference at the team headquarters in Burnham Beeches, a strong indication that he will play a part in England's opening World Cup qualifying game.

"It won't faze him," Keegan said.

Joe Cole and Kevin Keegan
Cole shows off his footwork under Keegan's watchful eye

"He will soon settle down and realise what we already know - that he belongs with these players.

"It's up to him now. I will know my team by Wednesday night but I won't give too much away as it's important for the players to feel they still have a chance to feature."

Cole certainly appeared unruffled by the glare of the media spotlight as he fielded questions alongside his coach.

I would be very unlikely to play with one striker at home. I think you would have to go back to the Domesday Book to see the last time I did that
  Kevin Keegan
"I intend to come here and give it my best shot," he said.

"The easy part is getting here but the hard part is staying in. I know players who have come in and then not figured but I want to be involved in the next squad too."

Keegan looks certain to revert to two strikers for the Germany clash, with Michael Owen set to return after coming on as a substitute to score the equaliser in the frindly with France.

Joe Cole and Nicky Barmby
Cole takes on Liverpool's Nicky Barmby in training at Bisham Abbey

"It is fair to say Michael has had a tremendous start to the season and can do no more to justify his place in the starting line-up," said Keegan.

"I said after the game in Paris against France that I would change things around for this match, and I am sticking to that.

"I would be very unlikely to play with one striker at home. I think you would have to go back to the Domesday Book to see the last time I did that," he added.

Keegan also re-affirmed his belief that David Beckham will develop into a future England captain, despite widespread media doubts.

"David is a leader by example and in his attitude for the game, but he's also a team player," said Keegan.

"I think he has got the temperament, which is where I disagree with the press. I believe he will go on to be an England captain, no doubt about it."

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See also:

29 Sep 00 |  Sports Talk
Should Joe Cole play against Germany?
03 Oct 00 |  Newcastle United
Dyer may yet face Germany
28 Sep 00 |  Football
Beckham's England honour
28 Sep 00 |  Football
Cole's England call
14 Jan 00 |  Football
Keegan: I'm here to stay
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