FABIO CAPELLO late night slammed John Terry’s criticism of England’s World Cup campaign, insisting the former captain had made a “big mistake” in speaking out in public.
Less than 48 hours before the crunch Group C decider with Slovenia, Capello moved to underline his authority in the camp after Terry claimed on Sunday that several members of the squad were unhappy with the coach’s tactics and were ready to hold clear-the-air talks with the Italian to explain the woeful 0-0 draw with Algeria on Saturday night.
“This is the big mistake – a very big mistake. It’s not revolution. It’s the mistake of another player – no more,” ranted Capello, who stripped Terry of the captaincy back in February over allegations he had an affair with the ex-girlfriend of team-mate Wayne Bridge.
“I spoke with some players and I think it’s only John Terry said this. No-one speak with me about the problems. My door is open always. If they want to speak with me they can speak with me.
“Every time we have a meeting I ask the captain, ‘Problems? You want to say
something?’ Never. I read that John Terry said this. I don’t understand why he don’t
speak with me every time.”
Capello also lashed out over Terry’s comments that only his Chelsea team-mate Joe Cole – overlooked for the opening two games – and striker Wayne Rooney, were the only two players in the squad capable of breaking down defences.
“It is another mistake when you speak about one player because there is no respect for the players that play before,” Capello added.
“Always the players think individually, I have to think about the team, it’s important. When you speak you have to be careful. I respect Joe Cole. But he is one of the 23 players I have here.
“I think he is more disappointed. I know sometimes players want to speak more with you [the media] than with the other players. But the mistake is that you have to speak with the players, with me, with the dressing room.”
But despite his rant, Capello has dismissed suggestions he may even drop Terry for tomorrow’s crucial clash with the Slovenians and is confident the Chelsea skipper can inspire England to a big performance in Port Elizabeth – one which they have to win to avoid group stage elimination.
“Sometimes from a big mistake comes a big performance,” Capello concluded. “The next performance will be good. I am 100 per cent sure.”
Upson gets the nod for Slovenia
FABIO CAPELLO yesterday went against his usual tactic to confirm that Matthew Upson will partner John Terry in centre defence against Slovenia tomorrow.
With Ledley King injured and Jamie Carragher suspended, Capello has turned to the West Ham defender for the must-win game in Port Elizabeth.
England have won all six games that Upson and Terry have been partnered together.