West Ham and England international striker Carlton Cole has admitted that he must take his game to “a higher level” to have a realistic chance of making Fabio Capello’s World Cup squad next summer.
The striker has featured in five successive squads and is included in Capello’s plans for Saturday’s home friendly with Slovenia and Wednesday’s World Cup qualifier with Croatia at Wembley.
The former Chelsea player told reporters that he feels that he must take his game to the next level to have a realistic chance of making the World Cup and he feels that he has got to take his game to a higher level than what he is playing now.
A positive result against the Croatia will guarantee England’s spot in South Africa for the finals in June but Cole is aware that he has to continue to make the kind of improvement that has been a feature of his game since the arrival at Upton Park of Gianfranco Zola last season.
Cole is also aware he must be more prolific in terms of his goal ratio if he is to challenge the likes of Wayne Rooney, Jermain Defoe and target man Emile Heskey for a regular starting role with England and said that he will have to take every chance when it comes and take it with both hands.
He also said that the base of his game on his physical presence in and around the box, his presence in the attacking third and unsettling defenders but knows that he has got to score more goals to become an England regular.