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Page last updated at 16:42 GMT, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 17:42 UK

World Cup 2010: Upson shrugs off Franz Beckenbauer jibe


Upson unfazed by Beckenbauer criticism

Defender Matthew Upson says England will ignore German legend Franz Beckenbauer's criticism and adopt the tactics needed to win games.

Beckenbauer derided England's "kick and rush" approach, claiming they have gone backwards under manager Fabio Capello.

Upson said: "We want to win matches, so we will play according to that. We will play the football that suits us best.

"If we are accused of kick and rush but win something, I don't think many people would complain."

The West Ham centre-back added: "Whatever he thinks about our style of play is his opinion."

England have been heavily criticised for their performance in the 1-1 draw with the United States last weekend, but the defender revealed Capello had not been too hard on his players.

I am desperate to play my part in this World Cup

Matthew Upson

"The manager has indicated he was very pleased with certain aspects of our performance," added Upson, who was speaking at the SOS Children's Village in Rustenburg, which he visited with England team-mate Michael Dawson on Tuesday.

"Whenever he watches us play he looks for the things he wants to see. It might be different to what everyone else sees.

"On Saturday he saw some things he was very pleased with. I also think he saw some things he would want us to improve on.

"That is the key to management. We have been working on it in training and hopefully that will make us a better team."

Matthew Upson
Upson visited the SOS Children's Village in Rustenburg on Tuesday

Goalkeeper Robert Green has been under intense scrutiny since making a gaffe that gifted the US their equaliser in Rustenburg, but Upson has insisted that his Hammers club-mate has been responding well and was ready to face Algeria in England's next group game.

"Robert is 100% ready to play on Friday," stated Upson. "These mistakes happen, although I cannot ever recall him doing anything like that.

"But he is a big boy and has handled it really well. He just has to put it behind him and move on."

Upson, 31, started nine of England's 15 matches before Capello named his 30-man provisional World Cup squad in the middle of May, but has slipped down the pecking order since then.

When Rio Ferdinand was forced out of the squad due to an injury sustained in England's first training session in South Africa, Capello turned to Ledley King. When King was forced off at half time of the US game, the England boss brought Carragher on and looks set to stick with him against Algeria.

"I am desperate to play my part," Upson admitted. "I have to be patient, keep focussed and keep working hard in training.

"That has been my main focus since I have been here and that is not going to change for the duration of the tournament. Everything else is outside my control."

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see also
Beckenbauer attacks England style
15 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
'Sorry' Green vows to bounce back
13 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
Bradley delighted to hold England
13 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010

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