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Page last updated at 19:35 GMT, Monday, 7 June 2010 20:35 UK

World Cup 2010: Barry to miss England's opening match

England midfielder Gareth Barry
England are likely to start with Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard in centre midfield

Gareth Barry has confirmed he will miss England's opening World Cup match against the United States on Saturday.

He has recovered quicker than expected from an ankle injury, sustained while playing for Manchester City in May, and begins full training on Tuesday.

But manager Fabio Capello had already said the midfielder, who was given a 13 June deadline to return to full training, was unlikely to feature.

And Barry confirmed: "I've been told I'm not playing to give me more time."

Captain Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard look set to continue in central midfield in Barry's absence, with Joe Cole potentially keeping his place on the left.

The trio all started Monday afternoon's 3-0 practice match victory against the Platinum Stars, with Cole remaining on the pitch after half-time.

Phil McNulty Blog

Indeed, Cole got his name on the scoresheet before substitute Wayne Rooney sealed the victory with a right-footed volley.

Jermain Defoe had given Fabio Capello's side an early lead in front of an enthusiastic home crowd after he had been played in by Gerrard.

And Defoe said England were confident of opening the tournament with a victory despite having problems with high altitude in the warm-up game.

"It was quite difficult to breathe out there to be honest," said the Tottenham striker.

"We are higher up than when in Austria for the training camp so altitude is going to play a major part.

Winning all-important - Defoe

"It felt a lot harder in terms of breathing and getting your recovery. It was quite difficult to get your breath back.

"But we will get used to that and we feel prepared for Saturday. Mentally we are prepared, physically we are prepared. Everyone is looking forward to the game."

Defoe defended strike-partner Rooney, who received a yellow card for dissent after becoming embroiled in a second-half spat with Platinum Stars' Kagiso Senamela.

The Tottenham striker believed Rooney's fiery temperament could be an asset as long as it was kept under control during the World Cup.

"If under control, I think Wayne's temper is a good thing," said Defoe, who refused to speculate on whether he had forced his way into Capello's starting line-up.

"When you've got that fire in your belly as a player (it can be good). If you take that away from Wayne, then he won't be the same player."



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see also
Team tracker and Predictor
27 May 10 |  World Cup 2010
Platinum Stars 0-3 England
07 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
King confident he can remain fit
06 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
England will recover - Gerrard
05 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Who are the champions? Third
08 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Who are the champions? Fourth
07 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Capello bemoans England 'curse'
05 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Ferdinand ruled out of World Cup
04 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
England training photos
04 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
England reveal 2010 squad numbers
03 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
World Cup venues
05 Dec 09 |  World Cup 2010


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