I would be happy to hear from Capello: Joe Cole

French champions Lille's English midfielder Joe Cole admitted on Wednesday he had not given up on playing for his country again and would be happy to receive a call from Fabio Capello.

Updated: November 17, 2011 09:51 IST
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Camphin-en-Pevele: French champions Lille's English midfielder Joe Cole admitted on Wednesday he had not given up on playing for his country again and would be happy to receive a call from Fabio Capello.

The 30-year-old -- who is on loan for the season from Liverpool -- won the last of his 56 caps at last year's World Cup finals and is hoping an impressive season for the French side will revive his international career.

"I have no contact (with Capello) but that's normal, every manager is different and Fabio doesn't talk much to his players," said Cole.

"That's not a problem. I just try to play well. If the call comes I will be very happy. I love playing for my country. If it doesn't, my main focus is to win trophies for Lille."

Cole, whose move to Liverpool from Chelsea on a free transfer in 2010 proved a big disappointment from the moment he was sent off on his debut, said that while he was satisfied with his form for Lille there was still room for improvement.

"I'm very happy because I hadn't played for a long, long time and sometimes it's difficult to find your fitness but I'm happy with my form," said Cole, who has scored twice this season.

"But I'm looking to improve as well, I'm still not back to my best level in my career when I was at Chelsea. But I'm very happy with the start and I think as a team we can improve."

Cole, who began his career at West Ham alongside the likes of Frank Lampard before moving on to Chelsea, said he felt most at ease in central midfield.

"I played there against Evian and part of the Milan (Inter Milan in the Champions League) game," said Cole.

"I enjoyed it. I like to defend as well as attack and being involved as much as I can. In that position you touch the ball the most and I think I can help the team in that position."

Cole, who won three Premier League titles, three FA Cups and two League Cups with Chelsea, admitted he had been surprised at the standard of Ligue 1.

"I think it's a very strong league, very physical, very good technically," he said.

"We didn't watch a lot of French football in England but I know now it's very strong. In a lot of clubs there's always one or two very exciting young players."

While Cole is happy at the club, and with the change of lifestyle and culture, he is undecided whether he would like to make the move permanent and thereby take a huge cut in salary.

"I've not even thought about anything like this," he said.

"The main focus to me is on the football. If my family is happy (which wife Carly and daughter Ruby are) and I'm happy we'll talk in May. And Lille has to be happy. We'll see in May."

In the meantime Cole is focused more on helping Lille keep alive their hopes of qualifying for the Champions League knockout stages by beating CSKA Moscow -- who they trail by three points with two group matches to play -- away next week, and he believes they are better than people make out.

"We've been very unlucky in a lot of games," he said.

"I know we've been criticised. I think we're strong.

"I'm confident in my team-mates and the manager (Rudi Garcia). We can go over there and win (in Moscow). We can pull off a great victory for the club."

Cole says that, while football is the same the world over, culturally French football couold not be more different from what he experienced in England.

"The big difference in France is that every day you shake your team-mates' hand or some team-mates do the double kiss, in England we don't do this. It's a very friendly atmosphere," he said.

On the lifestyle front Cole could not be happier, though, he admits that he will have to go easy on his love of French cuisine.

"The food is fantastic. Very nice. I'm not surprised. I have to be careful not to eat too much.

"The driving is a bit strange (the French drive on the right-hand side while the English drive on the left-hand side)."

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