Cole takes tips in bid to impress Capello

Carlton Cole is taking tips from the Premier League s top strikers in a bid to become an England regular

By JONATHAN CLEGG

Carlton Cole is taking tips from the Premier League's top strikers in a bid to become an England regular next season.

Cole, 25, marked his first start since returning from a two-month injury lay-off by netting West Ham's opening goal in last weekend's 2-1 win against Middlesbrough.

And the Hammers forward, who was this week named in the England squad for next month's World Cup doubleheader, has spent his time on the sidelines by consulting some of the world's leading hitmen in an effort to build on his Three Lions breakthrough.


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Cole has progressed from a back-up role at West Ham to become the club's No1 striker during an impressive season that saw the former Chelsea forward make his Three Lions bow in Spain in February.

Now he has revealed that he has been consulting Chelsea's Didier Drogba and Aston Villa's John Carew on ways to improve his game and become an international regular.

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He said: "I talk to Didier Drogba a lot and he feels I can progress even further. I talk to John Carew, too, because he is a striker who has scored a lot of goals everywhere.

"I've worked on my game by looking at DVDs at how other players play. I watch Drogba and Bolton's Kevin Davies, he's one of the greatest in the Premier League at holding up the ball.

"I watch [Inter Milan's] Zlatan Ibrahimovic, too. They are similar to me, big players who cause defenders a lot of problems.

"I'm trying to progress and be as good as I can. I've scored a few more goals than in previous seasons - it's been a lot of hard work away from the field as well as on it."

England coach Fabio Capello shares the belief that Cole can develop into a world-class striker after devising a special training regime to boost the striker's sharpness in front of goal ahead of England's World Cup 2010 challenge.

Cole said: "He wants me to work on a few things because he sees me as a great threat in the box using my physical presence. I'm working in training to become a better player.

"When you get to international level you're supposed to be a finished article and I'm far from that - but if he didn't think I could progress, he wouldn't be telling me to work on certain stuff.

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