A hat trick for Capello
By Guest Writer John Brandon.
Fabio Capello last night scored a hat trick on his world cup debut. A hat trick of school boy mistakes. A hat trick of arrogant decisions, a hat trick of blunders.
Leading up to the competition in the rainbow country the many people in the media and other professionals backed Capello and England to lift the inaugural pot of gold on July 11. The reason everyone was saying was Capello. I disagree. Last night Capello made mistakes, serious mistakes that cost England 2 points. First Ledley King, second James Milner and third Joe Cole.
Any professional sports man knows that to play at the top level you must be 100% fit. Any human being can tell you that when you have a virus it takes longer than the 2 days James Milner had to recover from it. I can’t imagine how Milner felt 1 mile above sea level with an immune system as compromised as Robert Green’s position in the England goal. After 30 minutes he had signalled to their leader that he had had enough.
Not to worry I thought Joe Cole, who is in the shop window after turning down Chelsea’s offer to re sign, would step in and carry on the fight to USA. It wasn’t to be, Capello chose Shuan Wright Phillips. A player who has been kept out of his club side by Adam Johnson (who at the time was having a beer with Abby Clancy in London). This was the biggest mistake of the 3.
Then at half time when Capello was about to deliver his speech Tottenham’s Ledley King drops a bomb shell that he has pulled his groin and could not continue any more. If Ledley King was a greyhound he would be walking around a Romford park with a muzzle on right about now, dreaming about what might have been. Capello knew that King could not complete a vigorous tournament of this quality.
King is not playing against mediocre opposition. This was USA’s world cup final so that in itself adds 15% to their performance and meant King had to find another 5% from his body to match them, he could not do this. Imagine having to find an extra few percent against Messi or Robben…….
So it was 2 forced changes within 45 minutes and a howler from your chosen number 1, not a good start to any competition. I have to admit resilience was shown and there was some great performances from John Terry, Glen Johnson and Steven Gerrard in particular and I still believe we will win the group and progress to the semi finals where we will have our world cup final against Brazil. We will get this far through true bulldog spirit and a bit of luck from the draw, not because of tactical nous from a fearful Italian.
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