Gerrard injury forces England boss Capello to try Belarus experiment

ENGLAND head coach Fabio Capello is used to being depicted as a strict headmaster, but tonight he is preparing to play the experimental scientist.<br />With qualification for next summer&rsquo;s World Cup already assured, the Italian has promised to tinker with selection and tactics when Belarus visit Wembley.<br /><br />His decision is made easier by the unavailability of top scorer Wayne Rooney and midfielder Steven Gerrard, who are both injured for the final Group Six fixture.<br /><br />All the same it marks a departure for Capello who, since taking charge last year, has hit upon a winning combination and, injuries permitting, stuck with it.<br /><br />A spine of eight or nine players has served the former AC Milan manager extremely well, ensuring England&rsquo;s place at next summer&rsquo;s tournament with two qualifiers to spare.<br /><br />But Capello yesterday emphasised the need to have a variety of gameplans, and said he viewed his depleted squad as an opportunity to test other formulae.<br /><br />&ldquo;We will play a different style against Belarus, with some different players. It will be a very interesting game for me. From this experience I will know some players better,&rdquo; Capello said. <br /><br />&ldquo;I have big confidence in all the players. Rooney is important because the style of Rooney is the style I like in my team. He is an important player but we have others. We can win with Rooney and without Rooney.<br /><br />&ldquo;We need to play other styles; style A, B, C. It depends on the opposition and the style of the game we need to play. I will do some experiments against Belarus. It&rsquo;s possible to see a different style and that will be very interesting for me. For me, it is a lot of experiments.&rdquo;<br /><br />Gerrard, who was subtituted during Saturday&rsquo;s surprise defeat in Ukraine, followed Rooney out of the squad yesterday having failed to recover from a groin injury.<br /><br />Capello may also have to do without goalkeeper David James, who faces a late fitness test after missing full training yesterday. <br /><br />Aston Villa striker Gabriel Agbolahor, who has been tipped to start, is also a minor doubt. <br /><br />Captain John Terry, however, is in no doubt as to the most significant absentee, calling Rooney &ldquo;irreplaceable&rdquo;. The Chelsea defender added: &ldquo;He has been the heartbeat of our qualifying campaign. This is a chance to play without him and the manager to try maybe one or two other players up front.&rdquo; Terry&rsquo;s central defensive partner Rio Ferdinand was pilloried for his performance at the weekend, but Capello said his new-found taste for experimentation would not extend to resting the Manchester United player.<br /><br />&ldquo;Rio will play against Belarus,&rdquo; he said. &ldquo;I have big confidence in Rio. He will play and I&rsquo;m sure he will get better with every game.&rdquo;<br />