TheFA.com caught up with England Head Coach Sven Goran Eriksson today as he refl
TheFA.com caught up with England Head Coach Sven Goran Eriksson today as he reflected on the Three Lions' last match against Slovakia with David Beckham and Chelsea also topics of the conversation...
Croatia are the visitors for the International Friendly at Ipswich Town's Portman Road ground on 20th August, and Sven is expecting a full-strength side to be available for the match which sold out in just over two hours. However, he also explained that, following his captain's recent move from Manchester to Madrid, he'll be waiting until David Beckham has had time to settle in at his new home before deciding on whether to call him up for the game.
"We haven't made any decisions about David yet," he told us, "but we'll see how things go for David and we'll make that decision just before we pick the squad."
He added: "I expect the rest of the senior players to be there."
It is likely that Madrid's first game with their new number 23 will be during their tour of the Far East at the end of the month, before they return to Spain for the Super Cup final against Real Mallorca, and Sven is happy to wait before making his choice. And he confirmed that he will being taking the time to watch Beckham throughout his first season abroad and will be interested to see where Carlos Queiroz plays him.
"I don't need to see him every week, but Tord and myself will travel to Madrid to see him.
"It will be very interesting of course to see what position he will play."
England were without Beckham for their last outing against Slovakia in Middlesbrough, and for that match Sven opted for a diamond formation. Though a first half goal for Slovakia forced Sven into reverting back to the more familiar 4-4-2 system, he has not yet discarded the option from his mind.
"I am sure that we will use it in the future sometimes," he said, "but we now know that we can play diamond and normal 4-4-2."
"I think it is the manager's job to try to change things when you see things aren't going as they are supposed to do.
"I am very glad we won it and we deserved to win it after 90 minutes. The second half we played very well and of course, it was absolutely necessary. We had to if we want to win the group."
Sven also laughed-off the recent speculation surrounding him and Chelsea.
"I am not involved with Chelsea in any way," he confirmed. "My attentions are fully focused on England and our qualification campaign to reach Portugal in 2004."
From Dan Freedman and Jamie Bradbury
Sven Statement - 8th July 2003
Sven-Goran Eriksson - Profile
England - Coaches
England - Fixtures and Results