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Lampard fired up ahead of Germany trip

Frank Lampard insists the mood in the England camp is buoyant ahead of the national side's friendly against age-old rivals Germany on November 19. Fabio Capello's men have won their first four World Cup qualifiers - a record for a modern campaign - and have lined up two friendlies before facing Ukraine later this season.

"We are getting the wins in qualifiers," asserted Lampard. "Now we have a couple of difficult friendlies [against Germany, and Slovakia, on 28 March 2009, four days ahead of the Ukraine qualifier], and we have to kick on off the back of these results and realise that we're not where we want to be yet but we're getting there."

There is a further mooted friendly with Spain, provisionally scheduled for February, although the venue is in dispute, with the FA refusing to play the fixture in Spain after ugly scenes of racist chanting during England's last match there, in 2004.

Lampard may yet find that he doesn't feature in the upcoming games, with boss Capello having shown he is not afraid to change the England line-up with hard questions still being asked about Lampard and Steven Gerrard's compatibility at the centre of the Three Lions' team.

With Gareth Barry pushing hard for inclusion in the starting XI, and the much-touted argument that a defensive midfielder has proven a more natural fit with either of the more attacking pair of Gerrard and Lampard, one or other of the Liverpool and Chelsea stars may find themselves warming the national bench, as the Italian coach seeks options in his midfield.


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