29th June 2010
Comment on Sepp Blatter's announcement that FIFA will reconsider the use of goal line technology following Frank Lampard's 'goal' in the 4-1 defeat by Germany can be found here: 'Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word'
Elsewhere, there has been major surprise that Fabio Capello has hinted that the England players were 'tired' at the World Cup. It has surely undermined his own position particularly as, before the tournament began, it was Capello who insisted that all the players were 'fit and fresh'. Which were they? This, of course, will open up the old chestnut of the mid-winter break. Something so beloved by continental sides but shunned in England when it is almost seen as the peak season for football. It will doubtless be one of many debating points over the coming weeks.
Capello's Future in the Balance?
Fabio Capello has admitted that the FA had asked for two weeks to consider his future as England manager. The Italian held talks with chairman Sir Dave Richards less than 24 hours after his side were dumped out of the World Cup following the humiliating 4-1 defeat by Germany in Bloemfontein.
Capello insists he wants to stay on as boss and see out the remaining two years of his £6million-a-year contract, but it does seem that the FA might be considering other options.
At a press conference, Capello was quoted as saying: "I said that I can be for the next season the manager of England, but it is for him [Richards] to decide. Asked if he wanted to continue Capello replied: "Absolutely. I have a contract. I refused a lot of opportunities to be a manager from a lot of important clubs because I would like to stay here. I like this job. I like to be England manager."
However, the Italian also admitted there were fundamental problems which he discussed with Richards. "We have to make changes. We spoke about this - about younger players we can play for the next qualification games - and I know what I have to do."
Capello also called for the English football authorities to look again at introducing a winter break during the season and said his players looked tired at the tournament in South Africa.
On Wayne Rooney's poor form, Capello said: "I think it's not only Wayne Rooney, but all the English players are really tired in this competition. I spoke with all the coaches and the physical situation and mentally - they are not the players that we know."
"The players were not as good because they played not so fast, not so quick. I can see through the seven games (including warm-up games) they were not so fast as I know. I understand a lot after this tournament because the players trained very well and were focused every time but the performance was not at the level that I know. Probably we are really tired every time at a competition that we have to play!"
On the winter break issue, Capello added: "Germany always arrive at the second part of the season very well when you play Champions League."
Unfotunately though Capello seems to have forgotten that it was only this season that Bayern Munich got through to the final, with English clubs clogging up the quarter, semi's and finals in the three previous years. Perhaps the two weeks cooling-off period requested by Richards is time to consider all these issues but it can't be good for Capello who has hardly been given a vote of confidence. Mind you, we all know what happens to Manager's given that, don't we?
Paraguay 0 Japan 0 aet (Paraguay win 5-3 on penalties)
Venue: Blagg Acres
Sustenance: A bottle of Asahai beer and a bag of teriyaki flavoured crisps
No! No more! Please make it stop...please....
Spain 1 Portugal 0
Venue: Blagg Acres
Sustenance: A bottle of Rioja
Much better stuff this, although you can add Ronaldo to the list of big players who needn't bothered to have cancelled their holidays this summer. Fortunately, David Villa has turned up and his goal put Spain through in an enjoyable match.