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Jul 4, 2010

Joe Cole calls for coaching overhaul

Joe Cole says England must reassess the way they coach young players after the country's World Cup exit demonstrated how the national side "abandon good technique".

• England blog: How do Germany do it?

A 4-1 defeat to Germany in the second round in South Africa has forced England into some intense introspection with Joachim Low's talented young side tearing Fabio Capello's group of stars to shreds.

Cole believes England were guilty of an inability to retain possession and says England are fatally fixated on looking to get the ball forward as quickly as possible. Such an approach left them vulnerable to a ruthless counter-attacking German side.

The FA has already confirmed that Fabio Capello will remain in place as manager and Cole believes that if success is to be achieved on the international stage, then a more fundamental rethink is required which will entail an overhaul in coaching practices throughout the country.

"It is obvious that we lack the kind of qualities you need to be successful at international level," Cole said. "We don't keep the ball as well as other countries; that's not a secret.

"It wasn't just the Germany game. Over the course of the tournament we looked a long way behind the other top nations and when it came to the crunch, the best side won. People will talk about the decision not to allow Frank Lampard's goal, but it was plain and simple to see that we just weren't good enough.

"Almost every team I have played for - including England - always want to hit the front players as early as possible. You won't get away with that at international level. It's about technique, keeping control of the ball, passing and moving.

"We seem to abandon good technique because we are obsessed with getting the ball from back to front as quickly as possible. That doesn't work against top teams.

"No one pulls the England shirt on with more pride than me but we've got to face up to the reality of it all. We're just not good enough. Maybe it's time to really look at how we're teaching kids to play. Maybe we're paying the price for having the best league in the world."

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