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Erickson calls in spy to keep eye on Swedes

The round of international friendly fixtures on March 26 and 27 will be an interesting indicator as to what we can expect in the World Cup.

Coaches will have largely finished experimenting with their squads and will be looking to establish a settled pattern in their sides without giving too much away.

It will be fascinating to see how Spain fares against Holland after England&#39s recent impressive performance against the multitalented Dutch side.

Spain once again have a squad with the talent to do well and the Dutch could give us some indication as to whether they can finally fulfil their potential.

England plays Italy but also of significance will be their future World Cup group opponents – Nigeria v Paraguay and Sweden v Switzerland. England manager Sven-Goran Erickson has appointed Stuart Baxter, an FA colleague who has coached for many years in Scandinavia, to spy on World Cup rivals Sweden.

“It&#39s odd,” he said. “An Englishman who has worked in Sweden watching Sweden to provide a report for a Swede who is about to take England to the World Cup.”

Also watch out for Ronaldo, who is talking of playing for Brazil against Yugoslavia. If there is one man whose complete return to fitness could swing the tournament, it is the Brazilian.


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