Keeper catastrophe not down to Capello cock-ups

by admin

Thursday, May 26th, 2011
 

Fabio Capello’s fall from grace in the eyes of the English public since the 2010 world cup has been almost as hyped as his team’s chances for the same tournament. One of the main problems journalists have cunningly picked up is his lack of communication skills due to his sub-standard grasp of the language. He didn’t help his cause in March this year when he proclaimed that he only needed 100 words of English to get every point he could ever have across to his squad.

But whether or not he’s quite up to the level of having a bit of banter with the average man on the street is actually quite besides the point. A more harmful side of his communicational inadequacy was experienced at the World Cup; being his policy of only notifying the players of his first eleven an hour before the match. Footballers, being creatures of habit, like to organise their days in certain ways due to superstitions and the like. As a result, they have to know whether or not they’re in the squad, and this last-minute nature clearly didn’t help the team on the big stage.

Even the recent captaincy debacle was played out all over the newspapers before the most important conversation, between incumbent captain Rio Ferdinand and Capello, took place. This problem extends to the squad announcements, as we have witnessed this week with the call up of David Stockdale.

Capello just simply does not have it easy with goalkeepers. It turned out that Stockdale was actually getting married the day before the match against Switzerland and, despite having informed the FA of this, he was still named in the first squad, albeit as cover for Joe Hart and Scott Carson. With Ben Foster and Paul Robinson, arguably Hart’s only other challengers for the number 1 jersey, having retired from the international game, Capello was forced to turn to another proverbial pensioner in Rob Green to get him out of the awkward situation.

Collective sigh of relief: England will have a third keeper in their squad. But does the blame for this embarrassing incident lie solely at the door of Signore Capello? Or does he have little choice when it comes to goalkeeping?

Let’s take Ben Foster for example. Young Ben has called time on his international career due to niggling injuries he picks up on England duty. It is, of course, understandable that a player who has amassed a colossal 5 caps since 2007 should be worried about such things. And in reality he will have a lot more games in the Championship next season to worry about.

Then there’s Paul Robinson. Without a doubt he dropped a clanger in that game you might recall against Croatia a couple of years ago, but he is unquestionably one of the main reasons Blackburn Rovers find themselves with a Premier League roof over their heads next season and surely worth a punt as England number 2. One problem. He decided he wasn’t liking not being Numero Uno, and so retired last year DESPITE having been called up to the squad after a few years in exile. Some gratitude.

The real problem seems to be these players can’t hack not being loved by Capello, and a sporadic box of chocolates and the occasional bunch of flowers, only on your birthday mind, just aren’t enough for these needy boys. Rumour has it New Wembley’s iconic arch was specifically designed in order to accommodate such inflated egos, but that is only a rumour.

Perhaps some perspective is in order. Take the marvellous José Reina. Always the bridesmaid to Iker Casillas’ much travelled bride for Spain, but does he complain? No. And he’s got a European Championship and a World Cup to show for it. Perhaps the likes of Foster and Robinson should think about that before they put themselves entirely out of the England picture.

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  • http://www.ukfootballfinder.co.uk Mystical Mike

    Capelo is, and always has been the wrong man for the job. The quicker he leaves and takes all those over hyped over paid idiots with him the better

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