Capello is starting to understand why his job pays so well. The crowd did not seem happy and kept asking for Beckham’s return while select tabloids are making a big deal out of his selection. Surely every journalist out there knows more than Capello about how to manage a football team… anyhow, here is what they had to say about last night’s match:
The Daily Mail’s Paul Hayward tries to defend an unpleasant crowd by claiming that they are still hurt from their failure to qualify. He also defends Capello’s choice to stay away from the limelight as much as possible and get on with his job. Good move!
What was not a good move, was Capello’s choice to keep various players on the pitch for most of the 90 minutes, according to Paul — who then goes on to criticize Capello’s selection. Seriously, did anyone expect this? I nominate Hayward to take over from Capello…
Mr. Ladyman — Paul’s Colleague — liked what he saw from both Bentley and Jenas and took time to praise the both of them. The Daily Mail also took the time to rate England’s players. Jenas, Gerrard and Wright-Phillips excelled according to them while Brown was a disaster. The rest of the team did well.
The Sun also took time to rate various aspects of Capello’s performance (just because focusing on players is boring) and, would you know it? He did well. Team selection, motivation, fear factor and tactics were great according to them, although the crowd was given a “DRAB”. Meanwhile Shaun Custis’ very long match report gave Capello a ‘B’ but praised Joe Cole and was overall happy with England’s performance.
Another Sun writer praises Capello’s decision to drop the big name flops and reserves praise for Bentley.
The Guardian seems to be kind to Capello as well. Barney Ronay, in his column, underlines the improvements that England made from one side of half-time to the other and has nothing but praise for the England team and the new manager. Apart from that, it does not give much in the shape of opinion. Rather it quotes Capello’s press conference and gives a match report which looks like all the others. Oh, and they also rated the players. Not much change there either.
OK, on to more reliable sources now, or not. BBC’s player ratings are voted on by supporters and here is how they look. If you ask me they make most sense, and would be quite accurate had there not been bias against Gerrard.
Then of course, there were the BBC pundits giving their views. You know, Hansen, Shearer and the lot of them. The one thing that they agree on is that Bentley played well and that this is just a start and a bright one. In all fairness their comments sound very much like the ones they made right after the Greece match. Oh, and here is more from Capello.
Echoing my comments that Hansen and co. sound a lot like they did a couple of years ago is Ahmed. Yep, the Soccerlens one. It was refreshing to see someone express their opinion rather than claim that whatever they said is the ultimate truth. To top it all off he added some links to the goals in case you found any of them to be peaches or you missed the match.
On reflection, the papers did not seem to be overly harsh on Capello, although there was plenty of room for criticism. Room which few exploited. Thus we are under way in another era during which many nails will meet their doom. I think signs are promising but it is really too early to call. After all signs were promising in August 2006…