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‘England to have it tough’

New Delhi: The presence of too many foreign footballers in the English Premier League (EPL) is, to some extent, hampering England’s prospects at the international level, feels former Liverpool striker Robbie Fowler.

Known as the most prolific scorer in Liverpool history, Fowler, 38, said something should be done to change the scenario. “Sometimes, there are too many foreign players in English teams.

“Football is a business now. Something needs to be changed. We must promote our own lads and give them enough opportunities to perform at the highest level, which is not happening enough. Some footballers in the national squad are not even playing for their clubs,” rued Fowler.

Asked about England’s chances in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Fowler did not sound very hopeful. “England can get past the group stage, but it will be difficult for them to go further. Brazil will be tough. There are better teams in the competition but this is the World Cup and anything can happen.

“Germany, Spain and Brazil are all strong teams and the winners, I think, will be one of them,” said Fowler, on the sidelines of a promotional in the capital.

Fowler rated Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo as the best player in the world now, and said he should win the World Footballer of the Year Award (Ballon d’Or) in Zurich on January 13, ahead of the likes of Lionel Messi and Franck Ribery.