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Has Capello called it wrong again?

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David Bond | 18:12 UK time, Monday, 6 February 2012

When the Football Association hired Fabio Capello on £6m a year back in 2008, they thought they were paying big money for a no-nonsense coach with top-class judgment.

But many will argue today that the Italian has called it wrong again by going public with his views on the FA board's decision to strip John Terry of the England captaincy.

Whatever the rights and wrongs of that decision - and many people applaud the FA for finally taking such a strong stance on this issue  - Capello is paid a lot of money as English football's main figurehead. How would Capello the disciplinarian feel if one of his players went public with his views on a decision he had taken?

Terry and Capello

Fabio Capello (right) has criticised the Football Association's decision to remove John Terry (left) as England's national team captain. Photo: Getty

And, while Capello's pride will have been hurt by this apparent interference from the board in team affairs, what possible good can it do to him or the team to air his grievances as he did on RAI TV?

Was it a message tailored for Terry to ensure he didn't quit the team at a time when Capello is short of central defenders of his quality? Maybe. But it would seem a very risky strategy to keep one player happy at the possible expense of so many others.

With Wayne Rooney's suspension for two group matches, England's build-up to Euro 2012 already had its problems. Capello has guaranteed that the next few months will be even more testing. That's because whoever he now chooses as captain will know he was not his first choice.

Whatever tensions may have existed inside the camp over the Terry affair will now be even more exposed - especially if, as looks likely, Capello is determined to pick him as a member of the squad for Poland and Ukraine.

Capello arrived in this country bemused with the symbolism attached to the captain's armband. He was a late convert to the importance of the position. Given how much aggravation it has caused him he must wish he had ignored those who told him he had to pick a permanent leader.

So where does this leave Capello and his relationship with the FA? Although there was no face to face meeting between FA chairman David Bernstein and Capello at Wembley today, the pair are likely to talk in person later in the week. But sources dismiss the idea of a showdown meeting so don't expect anything too dramatic to come out of that.

Bernstein has shown steel in forcing the issue on Terry, knowing how untenable it was to have him leading the team with criminal charges of a racial nature hanging over him. He and his board members are unlikely to change their minds now.

Equally, Bernstein and the board knew that Capello probably wouldn't take kindly to being told who he can or can't pick as his team captain. But while Capello is paid an enormous sum of money to run the team, Bernstein and the board are paid to see the bigger picture.

On this one, Capello cannot see how damaging it would have been for the FA and the England team to allow Terry to remain as captain until his trial on 9 July - a week after Euro 2012 ends.

Some have claimed Capello might be in breach of contract by now criticising that decision. There may well be a technical breach but there appears to be no appetite from the FA to force him out over this matter even though some at Wembley might like to see him leave before his contract expires in July.

The time for change was in the immediate aftermath of the 2010 World Cup - and the FA decided the cost was simply too great.

For Capello's part, he has let it be known that he has no desire to quit over the issue and risk losing the money due to him for the remainder of his contract.

And so after 24 hours of frenzied headlines we are exactly where we were, with Capello and the FA locked in a loveless marriage of convenience which is now even more likely to end in failure.


Page 1 of 5

  • Comment number 1.

    Maybe British people can learn something from Capello; the guts to say exactly what you think.

    The Union Jack has started looking quite yellow in recent years.

  • Comment number 2.

    Capello appointed the captain so he should sack him.

    This seems to be a breakdown of communication as much as anything else - why did the FA and Capello not talk about this privately?

    Presumably there's a contractual arrangement that defines who hires/fires the captain, so if it's Capello then the FA can make their views clear but acknowledge that the decision is his.

    If not, then Capello should be quiet. Either way we should not be seeing this public show of disunity and communication failure.

  • Comment number 3.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 4.

    The author of the blog is assuming that Capello has called this wrong, however I would suggest that it is the FA that have called it wrong. By reacting without consulting the team manager the FA have undermined what authority Capello had left. The players know that Capello will be leaving after the summer and now they know it is the FA that pull the strings. Capello's reaction is one of frustration, presumably feeling that he is the best man to manage the team. After all Capello would want to be able to pick the strongest squad possible rather than the squad the FA deem acceptable. You would not see such a knee jerk reaction in Spain or Argentina despite the comments of Aragones and Maradona in the past.

    I am not supporting Terry, but the media have already sentenced him and some of the England captain candidates also have murky pasts therefore creating even more off the pitch distractions.

  • Comment number 5.

    So Capello agrees with the basic tenant of UK law of "innocent until proven guilty" and gets ripped apart?

    And all the nonsense about the replacement team captain will know he isn't the first choice... he would also know that he wasn't the first choice if JT didn't get the captaincy removed, by the fact that he wasn't the captain!

  • Comment number 6.

    Fabio Capello has it bang on. Whether you like him or not Terry is innocent until proven otherwise. This is the job of the courts to work out full stop. FA once again flailing and flapping.

  • Comment number 7.

    I find it incredible that before Every major tournament, there is some sort of distracting scandal in the England squad. I can't work out if it is a pre-determined excuse for when England inevitably don't win, or if it is the distractions themselves that have left your nation disappointed for so many years. How about a positive, confidence-building story on how good some of the young players are, rather than this continuing, sorry saga of an aging player who's surely enjoying the last hurrah of his career

  • Comment number 8.

    john terry should either be suspended from the england team until this situation is sorted in court or he should keep the captaincy. its really odd and inconsistent to say that he is an honourable and decent guy to be able to represent england but not fit to be captain.they are both priveledged positions..the F.A have got it completely wrong..capello has got it right..i dont understand also how the football focus people shearer, etc can say the fa only had one solution..ithey have completely fudged it!..and makes no logical sense

  • Comment number 9.

    Please tell me why, when Capello is paid to pick the blasted team, and has TWICE dropped a captain himself, he is expected to sit there & stay mum?

    The suits at the FA are a bloody menace to any chance we have. Perhaps they might have been better doing something about the disgustingly racist-motivated booing of Evra at Anfield & now Ferdinand at Stamford Bridge-because what impression do you think THAT gives the rest of the world of us English;beer-bellied, foul-mouthed little bigots, as if we haven't suffered from that line of thinking for the last 30 years?

    It's not Capello who's called it wrong, it's the FA-they had a precedent when Gerrard was charged with criminal offences & rightly NOT dropped by his country until the court case was sorted-in fact, wasn't he captain at the time?

  • Comment number 10.

    "How would Capello the disciplinarian feel if one of his players went public with his views on a decision he had taken?"

    How would Fergie feel if the United Board decided to make a decision regarding his captain without having the decency to consult with him?

    And this is why I think Capello has a point. The FA made it clear they did not involve him in the discussions, why? We've probably all been in situations in meetings where we have not got our own way, but to be excluded, it was a stupid approach.

    "knowing how untenable it was to have him leading the team with criminal charges of a racial nature hanging over him"

    The FA were OK with this up until this point, if the case was to be heard in March he could have led the team in February. If they had said at the outset that Terry would have to relinquish the armband until the end of the case the issue would be over now, but they dithered and showed zero leadership.

    As for issues in the dressing room, if that was the reason for taking this action he should have been precluded from the squad. The issues will still be there, animosity would not have been linked to the armband but the man.

    "Because whoever he now chooses as captain will know he was not his first choice."

    They would know they were second choice anyway as the FA stated that Capello did not make the decision, and had already made his position clear....

  • Comment number 11.

    Capello is the only man who has called this correctly in my opinion. No matter who you are or what the charge you are innocent until found guilty. The FA have flouted the law and have probably damaged Terry's chance of a fair trial.

  • Comment number 12.

    I'm sure Capello feels a little miffed at being totally undermined by the FA. Is he in charge of the team or isn't he? In his position, given what has just happened, I'd just walk and say "to hell with the lot of you".

    Terry is innocent until proved guilty. Oh, except the FA appear to have tried him in absentia and carried out a summary execution.

  • Comment number 13.

    Capello should be sacked.

    Thank you to the FA for standing up for British values.

  • Comment number 14.

    A lot of predictable journalistic nonsense I'm afraid.

    Even if you agree that Terry's position was untenable, I think we can conclude that it is he drip, drip 'sources say' type articles that have talked the story up.

    David Bond says about Capello going public. Well, I would sooner hear an opinion from the horses mouth that the wishy washy yet pointed comments, again from 'sources' that the like of David Davies et al and are to spout when they volunteer for interviews.

    Why can't the outsiders (ex this that or the other and journalists) leave the insiders (the Courts, the FA etc) to get on with the job?

  • Comment number 15.

    The FA has got it right. Being captain of England carries responsibilities off the field which are at least as important as those on it, and Terry can't deal with those while this hangs over him. He ought to have resigned himself, but of course that was never likely. This is the man who thinks nothing of betraying a team-mate and friend by sleeping with his ex, after all.

    Suarez was punished on the basis of "the balance of probability" rather than proof, because the issue is so emotive. Are we really saying we shouldn't treat Terry the same way?

    Just as with that scandal two years ago, Terry has once again disrupted England's preparation for a major tournament through his behaviour. He's divided the dressing room by all reports, and if so he shouldn't go to Poland/Ukraine at all, and for purely football reasons. A team needs to be together. South Africa showed what happens when it's not.

  • Comment number 16.

    A very cunning collaborative conceit concocted by the Don and the blazers at Soho Square - i.e. they now have a ready baked excuse when England flop out at the qtr final stage yet again. I can see the headlines now: "Capello slams (it's always "slams") the FA suits: JT captaincy controversy cost us the cup". FA blast (it's always "blast") back "Arrivederci Capello".

  • Comment number 17.

    ''Equally Bernstein and the board knew that Capello probably wouldn't take kindly to being told who he can or can't pick as his team captain. They were prepared for a reaction like this.

    But while Capello is paid an enormous sum of money to run the team, Bernstein and the board are paid to see the bigger picture.''

    Capello is paid to run the team. Quite. That means picking the team and captain and managing as much to the best of his ability.

    As I said on another related thread, this now goes a little beyond John Terry and the charges brought against him, though the FA have already prejudiced the trial against him with their actions. Capello has been totally undermined and had every right to speak out, whether the player was Terry or whoever. He would never have been my choice as captain long before this incident but it's not my decision and it's not the FA's, but even if you think it is their right, to do so without even involving the manager it their discussions is at best discourteous and at worst downright disrespectful.

  • Comment number 18.

    I didnt know we had changed the law in this country, JT is guilty until proven innocent, fact JT innocent untill proven guilty, why should he not be captain, it is Capello's decision who is captain not the FA. It is outrageous all the falk JT is getting without having the right to reply.

  • Comment number 19.

    As a Brit living abroad watching events, it seems FA have become a political body of the pc agenda. The big issue here, as per Suarez case, is now before any major England competition those with grudges or agenda's can get an England player targetted ... and it makes ZERO sense to say 'he can't be captain but he can play' ..if the accusation is that much of an issue, it surely will effect the team as distraction, and also racial issue in England dressing room effectively, an accusation can get you removed from the team. So what should have been settled by grown men on the pitch, have become political games and endless media fodder.

    Terry is surely no saint, but this precedent of 'guilty until proven innocent' or as Suarez case, 'guilty by opinion and FA with pc agenda' , mean the following is very likely : Innocent Player X is accused by player Y with grudge/agenda, maybe even foreign team player, why not target say Wayne Rooney...he's a 'bad guy' so mud might stick right?

    If we convict people by 'bad character' (Terry case) or 'one guys word over another' (Suarez) ...before long Britains football will resemble the Salem Witch trials, as it appears to already.

    Also the FA are CLEARLY in the wrong, as for Capello to maitain any authority, he would have to announce the decision (even if he didn't make it) ... by going over his head, its the FA who have undermined England before a championship, and also given Capello an 'out' for another poor performance.

  • Comment number 20.

    There are quite a few things wrong with this article. Firstly, the player who gets the armband already knows he's not the first choice - Terry was the nominated Captain, and whoever gets it does so because an FA dictate says so. Let's not pretend the player who gets it will only realize now they weren't first choice.

    Also, Capello speaking out isn't the same as a player speaking out. Capello is the guy paid to make the choices, players are there to try their best if picked. It's a different dynamic - as Tevez is finding out now. Whatever the rights and wrongs of the Terry case, Capello had a key decision taken out of his hands. What club, or their fans, would applaud the board making such decisions for the manager? None. But, such is the tribalism these days, it's only John Terry, so what does it matter?

    On top of that, the article then suggests that Capello's reluctance to quit over this matter is because he doesn't want to "lose money". How ridiculous. On what basis is this claim made? None. Capello is a very rich man, losing this years 6m won't hurt him. I prefer to think that he's got one more tournament in him, and he's been working in the job for years, he simply wants to see it through.

    If the FA wanted to appear strong they should have acted a long time ago, instead of the cowardly way they've operated now.

    Finally I'll say this - of course Terry should not go to the Euro's. I'm hoping he quits international football at this point and concentrates on Chelsea. I'd like to see Lampard and Cole do the same. Just get out of this circus and concentrate on their careers at club level.

  • Comment number 21.

    @ 13 Nutjob - You think that John Terry stands for British values?

  • Comment number 22.

    Fabio Capello lost his respect with a lot of people including me with the Terry/Rio captaincy debacle. He cares not for the rest of the team and how they feel and his apparent pride, Taking the armband from Terry is the correct thing but even more important to me is that he is not an international defender anymore. At club level we can see how important Carvalho was,

  • Comment number 23.

    How Amusing. When I first read this in the headlines, my first reaction was good for him. Then I read the endless support for the FA in the BBC's reports and I thought, oh maybe I'm wrong? Then the first chance us 'Joe Public' get to have a say - what do you know all but a few posts are with Capello. Always got their finger on the pulse of the nation the BBC!

  • Comment number 24.

    Had JT done the decent thing, as Chris Huhne did when he was charged, this debate wouldn't be taking place.

    JT should have stood down from the England captaincy on the day he was charged, instead of waiting until it got to court, sending his lawyers along to plead on his behalf and then having to be pushed.

    Then again, there is a fine line between doing the right thing and being unbelievably arrogant!

  • Comment number 25.

    I'm sorry, but if you think Capello has called it wrong you have no right commenting at all!

    In his position he at least should have been shown the courtesy of being part of the decision process rather than being presented with a fait accompli. The FA handling of this whole affair has been so inept it beggars belief and all those involved should resign with immediate effect.

    So, I'm sorry, David Bond, but you don't have the remotest clue what you're talking about! And, yet again, the FA shows itself to be not fit for purpose.

  • Comment number 26.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 27.

    The thing I can't get my head round with this is why was the trial postponed until after the Euro's. If it was me or you we would be in court within weeks.

  • Comment number 28.

    What on earth is the FA doing? They may well have the right to provide a board decision to let Terry go, but not to speak with their appointed manager and include him in the decision making process? Shocking. Not that I think that Terry is the best advert for an England captain - far from it. However, the FA should have made this decision, including the views from their manager, some time ago. Now they will reap what they deserve. Completely naive! Thats our FA.

  • Comment number 29.

    Agree with the majority that both the FA and David Bond have got completely the wrong end of the stick. Terry is innocent until proven guilty, not innocent until it says he's guilty in the tabloids. Capello should make Joe Hart captain and tell Terry to remain a leader on the pitch. Capello is completely right in that you should never pre-empt a court trial, if Terry is found guilty, punish him as you see fit, if he's found innocent you leave it and move on

  • Comment number 30.

    "While Capello is paid an enormous sum of money to run the team, Bernstein and the board are paid to see the bigger picture.''

    Why don't you place the achievements which qualify Capello to do his job alongside those of Bernstein and Co. to do theirs?

    'Nuff said.

  • Comment number 31.

    Innocent until proven guilty, end of. This hysteria surrounding racism is absolutely pathetic. I say this as someone who believes Terry should never have been reinstated as captain, it doesn't matter. His treatment on this occasion has been disgusting. Fair play to Fabio for having the sack to tell it as he sees it.

  • Comment number 32.

    I completely agree with Capello, the FA have reacted poorly. If Terry is guilty of racial comments on a football field, he should not be playing for England, let alone as captain. This should have been taken to court as soon as possible, with proceedings taking part every afternoon, allowing all to train in the mornings and available to play in evening or weekend games as happened with Bowyer and Woodgate. Let's not blame Capello for others mistakes!

  • Comment number 33.

    Actually, Capello has called it right. The problem has been the trial being delayed until after the Euros. This should have been expedited and put to bed one way or the other long before the tournament. Capello is absolutely correct to stand up for the concept of innocent until proven guilty. It is the media (and the FA) who have failed to understand that this basic principle still means something to the majority of us.

  • Comment number 34.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 35.

    I have to congratulate the English media for once again going out of their way to derail another English sports team. As much I disapprove of John Terry, nothing has been brought against him to suggest he is guilty. He has not been shown to actually racially abuse Anton Ferdinand and in the FA's enquiry no one seems none the wiser. As per usual the effective and pro active police force (sarcasm here) take it upon themselves to launch a full scale investigation into the matter. If only the Met showed the same gusto in the London riots last summer eh? The whole crux of the matter is that the English legal system is based on the basis of "innocent until proven guilty." The Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms of the Council of Europe says (art. 6.2): "Everyone charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law". This convention has been adopted by treaty and is binding on all Council of Europe members. Currently (and in any foreseeable expansion of the EU) every country member of the European Union is also member to the Council of Europe, so this stands for EU members as a matter of course. Nevertheless, this assertion is iterated verbatim in Article 48 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. Therefore if I am reading this sentence right, the FA are breaching John Terry's human rights. The problem is that as soon as the word racism is uttered English people start acting like the gravest sin has been committed and therefore the guilty party should been hung drawn and quartered with immediate effect. Even if we are not certain of the facts. The sad fact for you Mr. Bond is that you like most of your colleagues could not care less about the English football team, the media's only prerogative is sensation. The Levenson enquiry has shown this. Capellon has not got it wrong. Like me an outsider, he is probably fed up just how pathetic England has become. What a welcome change it would be if the English could just for once actually back their team rather than kick them at every given opportunity.

  • Comment number 36.

    If a manager (or captain) at my place of work was appearing in court on charges on racial abuse, based in large part upon video evidence from my place of work, I would expect him to be suspended until proven innocent or guilty.

    Well done FA for standing up for what is right. Yet another example of a football manager placing his own interests above those of the game or indeed society generally.

    This must start to put in question Capello's ability to command the respect of his squad.

  • Comment number 37.

    I don't think this is a case of innocent until proven guilty, rather it is a suspension until all the facts are clear. This is quite normal in other walks of life.

  • Comment number 38.

    my point (which was removed) in short as not to break house rules is that the F.A were right and within their rights to sack Terry without Capello's say-so. i don't even think he is good enough a defender against he likes of the Germans (who destroyed him in 2010), the Dutch and the Spaniards, to merit a place in the team anyway.

  • Comment number 39.

    At 21:04 6th Feb 2012, fridaysboy wrote:

    @ 13 Nutjob - You think that John Terry stands for British values?

    I mean the FA are taking racism seriously as opposed to not being fussed about it, like many other European countries. Yes the process should have happened sooner, but the truth is Capello doesn't care and he'd happily pick Terry again, and put him in with Ferdinand and expect them to get on. Clueless.

    John Terry is a disgrace, why Capello gave him the armband again after the way he's conducted himself on multiple occasions is beyond me.

    Capello is a disgrace too. Get rid of the pair of them.

  • Comment number 40.

    This is all down to the FA who have decided for years that they and all footballers are special snowflakes who are not held to the same rules as the rest of the world.

    As gjowen points out in post 36, in the real world anyone facing the same charges as John Terry would be placed on "Gardening leave" until the court decision is made. The FA's own rules of conduct should reflect a similar position.
    Instead the FA has taken way too long to make the only decision it reasonably could, and in the process undermined the manager.

    No one is coming out of this debacle in a good light!

  • Comment number 41.

    Gjowen you cannot suspend anyone on hearsay, if you are facing disciplinary charges in a place of work there has to be strong and clear evidence of what you are charged for. If we worked on that basis quite a few people would be sitting at home awaiting trail. Me going to my boss saying that some one called me a foreign @&£)! would not mean that person gets sent home and stripped of all responsibility. Sad thing is this is about club versus country. North vs South, etc. England will never win a major tournament, as the English do not know what the meaning of team is. Your comment proves that. It's a ridiculous and banal point.

  • Comment number 42.

    Innocent until proven guilty, Capello is right. The FA and the media are wrong.If he is found guilty throw the book at him, what will the media and the FA say or do if he is found innocent.The media are always hell bent on bringing the national football down I just wish they would stop slagging the manager off and help him and the players. the majority of people on this blog agree with Capello. INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY that is the law (or so i thought) in this country.

  • Comment number 43.

    Coming from north of the border I find this all a bit strange. If John Terry is capable of representing England he is capable of being captain.
    Unless the FA have evidence which others are not privy to they should perhaps awaited the outcome of the case before acting and,if found guilty, banned him from playing for England again.
    I feel quite sorry for the next captain,and the pool of players, for Euro 2012 because they will all be put under the closest scrutiny by the media and not be given the freedom to express themselves on the pitch.
    It poses the question "Would Terry have been relieved of being captain if he had been charged with assault?, probably not.

  • Comment number 44.

    Everybody should read Blog 35 by Bokboy12.
    I think he says it all, i am in total agreement with him including disaprovement of John Terry but law is law and he is innocent until PROVEN guilty, and his human rights have been violated.

  • Comment number 45.

    all these pompous self-righteous people going on about ``innocent until proven guilty'' get me going, what would happen if a player were arrested for murder and held in custody without bail - would they still insist he must be picked for England then ? and that we have to have him released in the national cause ``as other countries would''

    Another thing, don't remember these type of people supporting someone like El Hadj Diouff when accused of spitting - in those cases were immediately screaming he must be thrown out of football. Wonder what the difference is with Terry ? Oh can't think.

    And see Chelsea fans resorted to type with racist abuse of Rio in revenge, bit of a pattern emerging here, wish people would be more open about their prejudices

  • Comment number 46.

    I do not mind admitting when Cappello got the job i was pleased, but now we have a shambles and he seems clueless. If the FA can get him out, i wish they would as otherwise we just have another tepid early exit to loo forward to. I am the only one sicked by his paycheque?? You would think that MIGHT at least buy some loyalty - he seems to want to make even Sven look good.

  • Comment number 47.

    Sad and predicatble BBC properganda, never mind the principles of natural justice the "most people applaud the FA for finally taking such a strong stance on this issue" line just proves it. What is the evidence for this remark? All this PC drivel militates against good race relations; how often do we hear the same liberal cabal ranting for human rights and leniency towards protected favourite species. Breathtaking hypocrisy and avid bigotry!

  • Comment number 48.

    If the FA are going to tell the Manager who he can or can not have as the captain, they might as well tell him who to pick in his team and in fact who to play, indeed what's the point in having a manager if you undermine him. We should be choosing the best players, not the nicest ones. I saw the FA would love the have Beckham back in the team, he might not be good enough but he would appeal to the non football watching public.

  • Comment number 49.

    Capello was right to question the validity of the FA.
    Why has it taken them so long to deal with this case? If they were going to strip Terry of the captaincy why wait until now?
    Capello was appointed manager of the England team and he should have the right to say what he thinks on his team.
    It is the FA that is out of line and this highlights the reason we have not won anything for years.

  • Comment number 50.

    quite refreshing to read a load of posts on this blog that agree with what i think. Terry is innocent until proven guilty, the manager's in charge of the team not the FA. If you hire a manager you can't just take the important decisions away from him when you want. Whether you like him or not, Terry is a semi decent centre back whose a committed England captain. The team needs stability and its just been ripped from under Capello's feet. From the looks of things the public seem to agree with Capello and the FA should get the flak for this because it is their fault, helping to defuse the situation? There wasn't much going on until they intervened!

  • Comment number 51.

    NO,it is your head line that has got it wrong,Capello is RIGHT when he says that until the man is proven guilty,the FA and all you pundits have no right to condemn him.
    England's football team will never win anything with useless old men running the game,making decisions over the managers head and undermining him at every opportunity as they have done with every manager since Sir Alf Ramsey.
    No wonder Capello is keen to leave in July and if I were John Terry,I would give England and the FA two fingers.

  • Comment number 52.

    Absolutely 100% agree with Capello, FA and media are totally out of order. Terry is innocent until proven guilty, its times like this that I hate the media. Just report the facts and keep your liberal opinions out of it. I despise you from the bottom of my heart.

  • Comment number 53.

    If the FA thinks the court case is unwanted distraction, then remove the player from squad selection. Tell everyone England do not want members with pending serious allegations but JT is welcome back after the court case if proven innocent.

    The gesture of stripping the captaincy is effectively a pre-court punishment, undermining the justice system. What will happen is, Capello picks JT in the team, media still focus on the issue comes the Euros, captain or not, nothing changes. The FA has gone on to destablise the dressing room.

    What if JT is then proven innocent in court, does the FA then step in again, restore JT as captain and strip the arm band from whoever is new captain?

  • Comment number 54.

    One aspect that most people seem to have missed is that the FA have undertaken their own investigation of the incident and have, no doubt, reached their own conclusion. They cannot however do anything in public until the court case has been completed, otherwise they would fall foul of the law.
    Read into that what you want...

  • Comment number 55.

    At last. Someone (not a Briton, I am ashamed to say) who has the balls to stand up for the principle for which people have died in their tens of thousands over the last century.

    The image-conscious tokenists in the FA should hang their heads in shame. For too long, this country has bowed to the assumption that if someone is accused (let alone charged), they are automatically found guilty in the court of public opinion.

    If Terry had pleaded guilty, the situation would have been different. He didn't: he protests his innocence. If we cannot deport a person charged with terrorist offences to another country, we should not "sack - just in case" a person in this country.

  • Comment number 56.

    I do wonder what all you bored journos would be saying had it been your media luvvie Harry Redknapp. It seems to me that because Capello isn't a media luvvie English manager who likes to feed you a nice story for a few quid, that anything he does from now on until Euro 2012 will be crticised.
    I doubt if it were Harry, it would be articles on how he's got it so wrong or i doubt we would hear from Gordon Taylor probably the biggest clown and contradiction in British Football.
    Surely the fool should be applauding the fact the Capelo is saying that one of his members is innocent until proven guilty, but let us not forget this is the same fella who has been so suportive of Car"Lost in Argentina" Tevez.
    I think this is an absolute nonsense that Capello gets asked a direct question and replies HONESTLY that he is suddenly at fault.
    The FA are outdated and clearly in the wrong but you've chosen to question a manager who has had his authority questioned? After handing back Terry the armband would you be happy if you were Capello?

    Simply the FA should have dealt with it from the outset or left Terry to be judged in a court, not this kangaroo court that will see Terry play but not Captain in Euro 2012, what a perfect solution.

  • Comment number 57.

    54. At 22:17 6th Feb 2012, Philip wrote:
    One aspect that most people seem to have missed is that the FA have undertaken their own investigation of the incident and have, no doubt, reached their own conclusion. They cannot however do anything in public until the court case has been completed, otherwise they would fall foul of the law.
    Read into that what you want...

    I'm a bit confused with what your saying, if they've reached their own conclusion, why have they removed Terry's captaincy but not removed him from the England squad? Surely if hes guilty he shouldnt be playing for England?

  • Comment number 58.

    It was capello's decision to make full stop not the FA or the media maybe he should not have made the coments but had the FA left the running of the team to the person they pay £6 million to do so then it wouldn't of happened.

  • Comment number 59.

    According to some Italian sports journalists Cappello is being misrepresented on this one David.

  • Comment number 60.

    judging from this board Bond, it seems your view that the FA were right to suspend Terry as captain is certainly a minority viewpoint. You really are a joke.

  • Comment number 61.

    If this isn't sorted out properly before the Euros then we can kiss goodbye to any slim hope of doing well.

    Terry is at the heart of all the problems - just get rid of him for goodness sake, it's not like he's any good anyway.

  • Comment number 62.

    I wonder how many strings were pulled to get the court case delayed until after the competition ?

    Who is telling the truth here ?:

    The FA : they just want JT in the Euros, so the trial is delayed, and they perform some nip and tuck with the 'armband'.
    JT : well it's clear from the video what he said to Anton Ferdinand.
    Capello : well he probably isn't used to the way British people are expected to bend the truth in this mendacious country.

    Frankly it doesn't matter who wears 'The Armband' ... it's been a long time since an England captain did anything but model sunglasses.

  • Comment number 63.

    I prefer not to have an opinion on the Terry captaincy issue but there are some details appearing on the press which, simply, don't add up.

    "Speaking to sports news correspondent Dan Roan, Taylor added: "I don't know what purpose it serves... it means there's not the right atmosphere conducive to a successful tournament [the European Championship in June -July].

    "It asks a question of the unity of the FA and makes it difficult for whoever takes over the captaincy."

    Mr Taylor, the unity thing is supposed to be about unity in the national team and a country's F.A.'s role is to help the well paid manager of the national team so that there is unity within the team and not within the ranks of the F.A. Are there cliques in the F.A.? Because it's the only logical conclusion.

    ""The FA's decision was made to take the heat out of the situation, which has festered. It was a decision to focus on the football.

    "And if the FA thought that was best for the team you would expect the manager to go with that.""

    Erm.... isn't an F.A. supposedly to let decisions to the national team manager? Is there any form of cummunication between the F.A. and the national team manager?

    So, add media to the equation and it's all becoming clear for an under-performing England side for donkeys years.

  • Comment number 64.

    Yet another mistake from Capello! Wasn't he the one who took the armband away from Terry when there were no "criminal charges .... hanging over him"? How on earth can he justify his stance now? Does Capello think that "criminal charges of a racial nature" are less serious than marital infidelity?
    Would Terry make the team anyway? He's got even slower this season than he used to be.
    By appointing Harry this week (having got rid of Capello), will the team do any worse in Ukraine/Poland than under the stewardship of the mad Italian?

  • Comment number 65.

    I believe that this action by the FA was taken as a preventative measure. Should Terry be found guilty after the Euros it will look bad that England went to the tournament with that person leading the team. It has the potential of putting our country in a very bad light. But with that in mind, he should probably have been taken aside and told to stand down of his own accord.

    Recent booing of innocent parties suggests that we, as a country, don't deserve to be painted in any kind of good light anyway. Maybe players like Terry and Suarez are in fact, the true face of our nation and how we wish to be represented.

    Aside from that, of all the possible centre-backs that could play in the Euros, Terry is probably the worst form wise and Ferdinand one of the best.

  • Comment number 66.

    Actually guys, it is not unusual in many walks of life for someone to be suspended from work whilst an investigation in alleged wrong doing takes place. In all of these cases it is important to understand that suspension does not imply guilt.

    My own view is that John Terry should not have been England captain in any case following his outpourings at the last world cup, which could be viewed as having under-mined the manager then. Other media reports talk about splits in the team about Terry's leadership too.

  • Comment number 67.

    #64, Jim,

    "By appointing Harry this week (having got rid of Capello), will the team do any worse in Ukraine/Poland than under the stewardship of the mad Italian?"

    This mad Italian happens to be one of the best football managers around. He came into the England job with the national side in broken pieces, having been embarrassed at Wembley by Croatia and with the spirit in the England camp at an all-time low.

    He picked the pieces, put them together and England became again a national side topping their group, winning matches and succeeding in qualification for tourbaments.

    Mad? You must be joking.

  • Comment number 68.

    Bit much to expect the BBC to reject the establishment line, but it's pretty clear this 'blog' does not match with most people's view of events, even through the clouds of media manipulation.

    "Equally Bernstein and the board knew that Capello probably wouldn't take kindly to being told who he can or can't pick as his team captain. They were prepared for a reaction like this."

    How exactly were they prepared for this? By having more 'sources' or spokesman available to give quotes to the press criticising Capello?

    I presumed the announcement had been made by the FA with Capello's agreement as a means to save him from becoming directly involved in the whole mess. Clearly it was not. In which case they have made a right mess of it, haven't they?

    The racism issue should have been dealt with immediately. Letting it drag on is not good for football as a whole, and surely that is what the FA are supposed to be concerned with.

    The FA should never have got involved with the armband issue. It's irrelevant and trivial, but is now giving the press extra fuel to damage yet another England manager, and increase any internal divisions, ahead of a major championship.

    The press would love this to grow and grow, for Capello to be sacked, then they can produce endless copy about who should get the job next, and why that person should be English etc etc.

    It's probably unreasonable to have expected the FA to be able to organise a simple conference call with Capello and Terry and discuss it all before coming to a sensible joint decision where all parties were able to show a united front in the best interests of the national team.

    Instead, the FA have publicly humiliated the captain, then left him in a position where he's still available to play. They've also publicly slapped the manager in the face and undermined his authority over team matters.

    Rather than controlling the issue, the FA have let it all drag on by trying to make themselves look good and everybody else look bad. For a bunch who are supposed to be concerned with the political side of things, it's bad man management and an abject failure to diffuse the issue. They've only made it worse.

    And the press are just loving it as usual.

  • Comment number 69.

    Terry captain or not makes no difference.

    Until the way football is run in this country England will NEVER win the European or World Cup.

    Anything that doesn't make the England team genuine prospects is merely commentary.

  • Comment number 70.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 71.

    A lot of people seem to be missing the real point which is why are we as a nation relying on a player like John Terry - i would rather he was kicked out of the team anyway for not being good enough, not given a ticket on the plane automatically!

    It is this sort of thinking that we, as a nation, always seem to make and then always wonder why we come up short. Look at Germany a couple of years back - they were rubbish, and then overhauled their team and blooded their under 21s (players like Khedira, Ozil, Goetze, Neuer) and are once again a force to be reckoned with.

    Noone of any serious note is quaking in their boots when they see England lining up with John Terry, Frank Lampard and Rio Ferdinand - instead they are thinking, "we fancy our chances here". That defence is highly susceptible to players who can run, as Terry is slower than an oil tanker and Rio's back means he cant run anymore. The old guard need to be completely replaced with young and hungry players - players who have something to prove, not people in the swansong of their careers.

    Capello should use this tournament as a legacy for the next manager to take over by fielding a team like this:


    Richards Smalling Jones Johnson

    Oxlade-Chamberlain Cleverley Wilshere Young

    Rooney Sturridge/Welbeck

    Yes, i know that is a young inexperienced team but can you honestly tell me they would not have done any better against the United States and Algeria in last years World Cup?! Where did all that experience of the golden generation get us?!? nowhere, absolutely nowhere.

    Even if they got knocked out early it would give them vital experience for future campaigns.....

  • Comment number 72.

    If John Terry is guilty of these charges he SHOULD be punished under uk laws but

    the same laws also state innocent until proven guilty what sort of message does it send to a potential jury that he already has been judged by the Fa and found guilty?

  • Comment number 73.

    I'm not surprised Capello is annoyed.

    He's paid £6m a year to manage the team, and by all accounts wasn't even consulted on this decision by the suits! That is absolutely crazy. They don't know the ins and outs about how the whole thing affects the players, Capello is the only man who can call that. It's a ridiculous display of arrogance by the board.

  • Comment number 74.

    Giving support to someone accused of such a crime will make the black players feel that racism is not viewed as a serious matter, just as Liverpool's stance has done.
    There are already indications of dissatisfaction among England players and it's beginning to look like Terry's case was put back to allow him to play in the Euros then retire from international football.
    I'm afraid I feel that he should just be jettisoned for the good of the squad. He's just going to be causing unrest and bad team spirit if he's picked, never mind as captain.

  • Comment number 75.

    The FA have taken a surprisingly firm stance for once on a situation which has threatened to totally tear apart the dressing room.

    However, if you remove Terry as captain you create more problems than you solve. You cause your £6m-a-year manager to undermine your decision (in which you have the right to overrule him as you're the hierarchy) which leads to the FA looking stupid and incorrect.

    Although this is strictly a matter of opinion whether Terry should have remained as captain or not, he was the person Capello stripped of the captaincy not too long ago for adultery. So surely, for a much more serious potential offence of racism, a similar decision should have been taken out by Capello? Or even more simply if Terry had resigned himself, but we all know he would never do that to himself. He is far too arrogant for that.

    Yet, if he now goes without having the captaincy it will mean the dressing room is even more divided. If it were down to me, neither Terry nor Ferdinand would be on that plane purely and simply as they're not the countries best centre halves. Cahill, Jagelka, Lescott, Smalling, Jones all above in the pecking order for me.

  • Comment number 76.

    #75. At 22:51 6th Feb 2012, KieranM_94 wrote:
    The FA have taken a surprisingly firm stance for once on a situation which has threatened to totally tear apart the dressing room.


    Excellent. All that's left is to share the England manager's salary between them and also manage the team.

  • Comment number 77.

    David Bond | 18:12 UK time, Monday, 6 February 2012
    "Capello has guaranteed that the next few months will be even more even more likely to end in failure"

    For the love of god, can anyone explain how the Circo Medrano of who is captain or what Terry did or what the FA chose or what Capello said or the agendas of the press will have the slightest impact on the players' performance when they face Ribery Benzema & co in June.

    Or are you all being taken for a ride.


  • Comment number 78.

    In my opinion the FA have got it right. In the public sector it is quite normal for employees to be suspended on full pay whilst investigations are carried out so this is not any particular slur on John Terry or saying that he is guilty.

    Terry should have offered his resignation as Captain as surely he should have realised the effect this would have on the team unity and performance as demonstrated by the success in the last world cup.

    Players who have the honour of playing for England should behave appropriately on and off the pitch and realise this is part of their job just like it is for many professions such as teachers where professional ethics are important.

  • Comment number 79.

    Probably the only way to sort this now is to choose the captain on a random basis, perhaps by drawing straws before the match, or whose birthday it is, or maybe a phone vote with Ant and Dec announcing the results after a 10 minute silence so we all realise just how important and life-changing the decision of who wears the armband really is. Or maybe 11 captains? Working that out should keep the suits in the FA busy in meetings and free lunches until well after the Euros, then they can be let out in public again.

  • Comment number 80.

    "Because whoever he now chooses as captain will know he was not his first choice."

    Surely they all knew that anyway? Hence Terry being England captain? Surely the players would know that Capello would have wanted Terry as captain regardless? And the reason Terry's been captain for most of Capello's tenure is because he is first choice, and everybody else is second?

  • Comment number 81.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 82.

    I think Terry is a despicable person. However, Capello is correct in everything he says.

    Innocent until proven guilty seems to have been forgotten nowadays.

    Once again the FA are playing politics and trying to stay on the right side of the media.

  • Comment number 83.

    and most people applaud the FA for finally taking such a strong stance on this issue
    Is there actually any hard evidence supporting this claim?

  • Comment number 84.

    You state in your article
    "Because whoever he now chooses as captain will know he was not his first choice". Doh! Don't you think that they would know that anyway as it is quite obvious that John Terry was his first choice as he was already Captain.

  • Comment number 85.

    I would suggest David Bond read the comments under his blog and revisit the line "Whatever the rights and wrongs of that decision - and most people applaud the FA for finally taking such a strong stance on this issue " not sure that's true. Most people don't like the FA presuming the outcome of a court case. It is incredibly illiberal and maybe they should face contempt.

  • Comment number 86.

    Up till this point I believe the F.A. have done as good as can be expected in the Terry case.

    My opinion is that the court hearing should be as soon as possible. The decision from the court would've made it easy to choose what to do.

    This new Capello situation seems quite justified in my opinion. He is the manager of the team, whether you like him or not, and he should have a lot of say in the FA's decision to strip the captains armband from Terry. I still feel they made the right decision, but for him to be excluded from the discussion all together is unprofessional and Capello has every right to be angry.

  • Comment number 87.

    7. At 20:47 6th Feb 2012, BlueBear85 wrote:

    I find it incredible that before Every major tournament, there is some sort of distracting scandal in the England squad. I can't work out if it is a pre-determined excuse for when England inevitably don't win, or if it is the distractions themselves that have left your nation disappointed for so many years.

    It's the former.

    These ''scandals'' are manufactured to use as a softening blow to explain yet another inevitably inept English performance in a major tournament. That way, 30m Sky Sports viewers and Sun readers can cite anything but the truth (ie. England being an abysmal football team) to ''explain'' yet another failure.

  • Comment number 88.

    Personally, and it's only an opinion...They both got it right...and they both got it wrong...and got it oh so very wrong...just saying.

    Yes, John Terry should have lost the captaincy...whether innocent or guilty, he should have voluntarily stood aside until after his trial (why the long delay? it's not like he's a mass murderer...), but, as previous posts have said, his arrogance/ego stopped this.

    If the F.A were going to strip him of the armband, the decision should have been taken as soon as it was known that there was likely to be a court case...BUT, with a full and frank meeting with Capello...not the way Mr. Bernstein went about it.

    I don't think John Terry should even consider playing for England, again, innocent or simply refusing to stand down...even now...ego, whatever...he has brought disrespect to the English game...AGAIN...and as he is no longer the player he was 'quite average by the way''s time to stand aside and let someone more deserving, or hungry to wear the Three Lions with more pride and demeanour than he certainly has.

    It's the Manager's job to pick the team/captain...not Mr. Bernstein et al...our doubtless failure in the Euroes...Mr. Bernstein et al...Will that be your fault...the team's...or Capello?

  • Comment number 89.

    Fabio removed the Captaincy from JT when he slept with Bridge's lady. That wasn't proven in a court of law outside of football. And yet now he says he shouldn't remove him for something not proven in a court of law outside football.

    I've been unconvinced by him for some time. Publicly criticising your bosses? As in many situations, after seeing this, I think 'What would Alex Ferguson do'? :)

  • Comment number 90.

    Capello is the manager, it's his job to pick the team and choose the captain.
    How would you feel if some blazer wearing dimwits wanted to make decisions for you in your job when they NEVER take any responsibility for hings that go wrong.
    Football at every level in this country is being screwed by the self serving clowns on the FA gravy train. A complete overall is needed. As was recently said football is the worst governed sport in Britain.

  • Comment number 91.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 92.

    Sad fact is that the F.A. and just about everyone else are so afraid of being labelled racist that they jump the gun and criticise or condemn people as quickly as they can so they can shout from the rooftops how much they despise racism. The F.A. are totally wrong in this matter, as they were in the Luis Suarez fiasco. If people are going to be convicted on "probability" in any form of trial or hearing then we could all be in trouble. What if John Terry is found innocent at his trial in July? Will the F.A. offer to reinstate him as captain? Its not Capello thats the problem, its the F.A., they jumped the gun and created this whole mess because they just had to be seen to be condemning racism. It seems that an accusation is quite sufficient to condemn someone now, witnesses, proof, evidence are not important. Given that the whole population of this country seems to utterly despise racists and racism it is quite a surprise that it exists at all really isnt it? Millions of football fans up and down the country will chant their displeasure at Terry and Suarez for the rest of the season Ive no doubt, does anyone seriously think that this chanting has anything to do with how strongly people feel about racism? Is anyone stupid enough to believe that when Luis Suarez is booed for the entire match at Old Trafford in a few days that it will be because he has been found guilty of using offensive language to another player? He will be booed because he is a Liverpool player playing against Man Utd and presents the easiest target. As for the nonsense that someone posted earlier about "Evra being booed in a racist manner" by Liverpool fans, Oh my, do you understand anything at all about football? Or life in general for that matter? Or do you just think what you are told to think by the media? Evra was booed because he plays for Man Utd and he got one of Liverpools players banned for 8 matches. It wouldnt have made any difference whatsoever if Evra had been white, blue, pink, green, gay, straight, male, female, human, martian, blonde, brunette, 6 foot 7 or 4 foot 9, he was always gonna get booed because of what happened. It had nothing whatsoever to do with racism. I just wish people would start to think for themselves again instead of waiting to be told to find something offensive. How many people would find the name calling of a kid with red hair as offensive as the name calling of a kid with black skin? Not many, but I guarantee that if there was a clampdown on namecalling of hair colour then these same people would be up in arms about it. Think for yourself people of Britain, before its too late.

  • Comment number 93.

    One aspect that most people seem to have missed is that the FA have undertaken their own investigation of the incident and have, no doubt, reached their own conclusion. They cannot however do anything in public until the court case has been completed, otherwise they would fall foul of the law.
    If that was the case they would have removed the armband a longtime before. The catalyst for their decision was the delay to the trial, nothing else. The reason for their decision was to try and appease the media,nothing else.

    The media control the FA and that is why the England team will never ever win another tournament.

  • Comment number 94.

    Can people get over the 'innocent until proven guilty' argument. He is still innocent. In any job under such circumstances, you would be suspended until the facts are clearer as it causes less disruption.

    The FA did what was needed. What is strange is that he's still allowed to play.

    Capello should have been consulted too. But he wasn't and instead of trying to be professional (he can't change the decision) he's thrown his toys out of the pram.

  • Comment number 95.

    The ''innocent until proven guilty'' argument just doesn't work. In practice, outside the courtroom, the opposite is true. Why else do you think they remand people in custody? :rollseyes:

    If you take the argument to a logical conclusion, then someone like Harold Shipman should have been allowed to continue working as a GP after he was charged on multiple counts of murder.

    The fact of the matter is that what Terry is accused of doing strongly interferes with, and jeopardises, his position as England captain. In these circumstances, being suspended from his captaincy duties until the matter is resolved, is the correct decision.

    I sympathise with Fabio's frustration, but the FA (for once) have actually got something right.

  • Comment number 96.

    ok ok so everyone insists that Terry still captains the team whether he is a racist or not, and not forgetting the north-south split he perpetrated and his obvious fall out with Capello at last world cup which left him blanked by other players - what a great leader this man is, how we cannot have any tem spirit without him there, do me a favour - we are heading for the same disaster that befell the Dutch during Euro 1996, remember that with black/white line camps, oh how we laughed at them then.

    Surely this is the ideal chance to call his bluff, be rid of Capello, appoint someone really capable of pulling a team together like Martin O'Niel, or Alan Pardue, or Harry if available, finally cast out the ``golden generation'' pick mix of youngsters & real pro's like Scott Parker, and take a team prepared to give it a go, not have one eye on the make like in the last 12 years.

    then whole nation can have pride in them not just that motley crew who chant ``I'm England till i die''

  • Comment number 97.

    Whatever the rights and wrongs of that decision - and most people applaud the FA for finally taking such a strong stance on this issue - Capello is paid a lot of money as English football's main figurehead.
    Mr Bond - I think it is about time you rewrote this rather inaccurate and misleading paragraph!

  • Comment number 98.

    It shocks me that the BBC's Sports Editor can pen such a lopsided piece of PC nonsense as this. Get a grip. I'm not a big fan of Terry or Capello but i applaud him for not being a weak 'Yes Man' over this issue.

    This is nothing like a player speaking out against him, nothing like it. He is in charge of the team and should have been consulted. The writer of this article could take a lead from Capello and have the guts to give a real opinion and not just tow his paymasters pathetic party line.

    "Most people applaud the FA for finally taking such a strong stance on this issue"

    Do They?? Leave it Out.

  • Comment number 99.

    Regardless of the allegations, John Terry shouldn't be anywhere near the England squad (let alone captain) due to the fact that he's an over-the-hill plodder.

    The obvious choice to lead the Three Lions in the Ukraine is Gareth Barry; a consummate pro.

  • Comment number 100.

    It's the FA who have bad judgement , such as an over budgted national stadium, overpaid manager, FA cup semi finals at Wembley, meaningless international frendlies, and failed world cup bids.


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