Gareth Barry has challenged England's shadow squad to make life more difficult for Fabio Capello when making his selections for the 2010 World Cup.
Barry and Wayne Rooney will be the only first-choice players in action against Brazil this evening if skipper John Terry fails to recover from an ankle problem. But Barry has urged the fringe players to take heart from England's 2-1 win over Germany in Berlin a year ago when the squad was also decimated by injuries.
The Manchester City midfielder said: "The players that are missing are top-class players that have performed for many years. But hopefully we can put in a performance and make the competition for places that much bigger and it will help England as a nation."
He added: "We can also take a lot of heart from that performance in Germany a year ago.
"The players who played in that game had to raise their performance level, playing against a tough international team.
"We can take that into the game and hopefully will get the same sort of positive response."
Barry admitted it is a concern that so many star names are absent at the same time but is glad it is the case now, rather than in South Africa next June.
He said: "You are always going to get two or three missing at the same time but, when you are looking at double figures, it is very strange to be happening.
"I am sure we would rather be having the injuries now rather than May and June so, fingers crossed, we are getting them out of the way."
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