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By ESPN Staff

McClaren backing Gerrard/Lampard partnership

Steve McClaren insists Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard could play together in the same England team.

The return of Owen Hargreaves is likely to give the England boss a selection dilemma over how to fit two of the Premiership's most prominent players into his system.

But asked on BBC Radio Five Live's Sportsweek whether Gerrard and Lampard could fit into the same team, McClaren said: 'Most definitely - to have players of that quality in your team can only be of benefit.'

Joe Cole's eventual return will afford McClaren an extra option opposite Aaron Lennon on the flanks with the likes of Stewart Downing also pushing for a place.

McClaren added: 'We have great midfield players. With Joe Cole and Hargreaves expected to come back we have great competition in that area.

'We have tried one or two different permutations with Stevie on the right with Hargreaves, Lampard and Downing on the left. Unfortunately having Hargreaves out has been a big loss for us.'