If you thought Fabio Capello has put his managerial mistakes behind him with the successful start to England’s European championship qualification efforts think again.
He managed to pull yet another massive blunder out from that magic hat of his ahead of England’s qualifier against Wales.
His decision to reinstate John Terry as captain of the England team has split opinion, with many feeling sympathetic towards Rio Ferdinand and Steven Gerrard who have lost the opportunity to take up the role due to injury. Even Frank Lampard has received his share with many seeing him as a viable leader and a deserved choice as opposed to the troublesome Terry.
Capello’s decision to hand the armband back to John Terry perhaps signifies a desire for stability, Terry is an experienced captain and from that point of view it made sense to give him the captaincy back. It initially seemed weak from Capello, the manager without any conviction, but understandably he doesn’t want to take a risk regarding the team’s leadership on the field.
At his first media conference as reinstated captain, John Terry said that the team seemed to be behind him and no player had voiced disapproval at the decision. It’s all very well to believe that they are all unmoved by this, but spare a thought for Rio Ferdiand and the other players under Capello’s management.
Capello revealed that he had yet to speak to Rio Ferdinand following the decision to take the captaincy away from him.
Admittedly Rio’s health has made him an intermittent captain and Capello understandably wanted someone more involved in the games, but it is extremely disrespectful of the manager not to speak to him in person prior to the decision. Even though Ferdinand wouldn’t have had much of an argument, he was still one of the subjects of the decision and should have been dealt with as such. Capello seems to be afraid of breaking news to players face to face (remember his announcement that David Beckham wouldn’t play for the team again), instead preferring to get the news out to the media as quickly as possible so that there is nothing left for him to discuss with the player in question.
Rio will feel aggrieved at Capello, not Terry, and so will other players who feel the process was unjust and distasteful. So while the players may not have a great problem with Terry being captain again, several will certainly be unhappy with the manner of the decision and will therefore still hold contempt regarding the captaincy issue.
At the press conference, Capello admitted he has made mistakes in this situation. (Watch Capello’s press conference here)
Apologies and concessions in football do not tend to absolve the subject. Capello has no chance of restitution considering his pitiful time as national manager so far. There are few second chances in the game, both literally and metaphorically.
Accusations are now rife that he has no interest in the job anymore and is continuing only for the money as he has the upper hand on the FA in this case. He’d have done far better to take a chance on a new captain or to highlight that Terry’s captaincy was only temporary. All in all, it’s doubtful that many are surprised to find Capello tripping himself up yet again.
Was Capello wrong to reinstate John Terry? Can he resolve the situation with Rio Ferdinand?