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Last Updated: Sunday, 11 June 2006, 11:51 GMT 12:51 UK
We must beat the heat, says Cole
Joe Cole
Chelsea star Cole believes England will top their World Cup group
Joe Cole says England need to adjust to the sweltering conditions in Germany after their ordeal in Frankfurt.

The midfielder admitted the players had their energy zapped by the 30C heat in Saturday's World Cup opener with Paraguay and had to hang on.

"In the first half we were excellent but in the second half we had to dig in and show a lot of character," he said.

"I don't want to sound like I'm making excuses but the conditions definitely played a major part."

Cole, one of the few players to emerge from the 1-0 victory with any credit, said the players first experienced the searing heat in their last training session before the match - and the position did not improve once they were inside the stadium.

"It was really tough, we're not used to playing in these conditions," he said.

"I know it's the same for the other team, and we'll definitely get better with the heat, but I hope the temperature drops.

"We jumped straight into the ice baths when we came off, which aren't that pleasant, but it's all about recovery."

All in all, Cole was pleased with the way England acquitted themselves and believes Trinidad and Tobago's fighting draw with Sweden has given Sven-Goran Eriksson's team an excellent chance to top their group.

"Trinidad showed what they're capable of, they looked a strong, powerful team, but I think we'll go to Nuremberg and win the game," he said.

"We want to top our group and do it in style - and a good win on Thursday will set up the Sweden game nicely."



SEE ALSO
England make water plea to Fifa
11 Jun 06 |  England
BBC pundits blast Eriksson
10 Jun 06 |  England
England 1-0 Paraguay
10 Jun 06 |  World Cup 2006
Ruiz pleased with Paraguay effort
10 Jun 06 |  Paraguay
England team guide
22 May 06 |  England


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