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Mind is made up on England squad, says Capello

Fabio Capello has said he knows the names of the players who will carry England's World Cup hopes in South Africa — and they are the same ones he had in mind when he arrived in Austria a fortnight ago.

Capello will not phone the unlucky seven to be axed until tomorrow morning, and has no intention of giving any clues publicly before then.

But, providing the medical update on Gareth Barry confirms the Manchester City midfielder will have recovered from his ankle injury by the time England start training again after their Group C opener against the United States on June 12, Capello's mind is made up.

“I know the 23 players who are in mind. They are the same 23 that I decided last week. Nothing has changed,” he said.

“We have to wait for Gareth Barry. We will decide on him after we have had the final check to see how long it will be before he can train with us.

“We have to know everything about this situation but I am not disappointed my mind is still the same.”

Although Capello is keeping the exact make-up of his squad secret, there are a couple of certainties.

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Neither Michael Dawson nor Scott Parker had played a single minute for Capello during the Italian's two-and-a-half-year reign as England coach prior to the two-week Austrian training camp. And as they still have not been involved, they can book their summer holidays with a large degree of confidence.

Neither Tom Huddlestone nor Darren Bent took the chances afforded to them by a starting berth yesterday afternoon and were replaced at half-time, so they too are likely to miss out. Stephen Warnock is highly unlikely to displace Leighton Baines as second choice at left-back, which leaves Adam Johnson, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Joe Cole scrapping over the remaining spot.

And, listening to Capello, Cole's second-half cameo, when he shone more than Wright-Phillips, might have done the job.

“I know Joe Cole very well,” said the Italian. “He is in a good moment.

“He is fresh because he did not play a lot of games. Joe Cole is good. He played very well in the second half.”

However, even though Capello knows his squad, there is a conundrum looming ahead of that opening match against the United States of America in Rustenburg.

As Barry seems certain not to be fit in time, Frank Lampard needs a central midfield partner.

On the evidence of the Mexico game last week, and yesterday's scrappy 2-1 win over Japan in Austria, Steven Gerrard would be the best choice.

Japan stunned England by taking the lead through Marcus Tanaka on seven minutes but the same player then levelled matters with a headed own goal in the 73rd minute. Another own goal, this time from Yuji Nakazawa, six minutes from the end gave England victory.

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