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English Win Highlights Capello's Questionable Delays
Posted Mar 29, 2011 by Shaun Edwards
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Watching the England national football team is without doubt a troublesome experience a lot of the time. Following their appallingly mediocre display against Montenegro last year, they then utterly dominated an admittedly poor Welsh side, having essentially wrapped up the victory in no more than fifteen minutes through a cleverly utilised 4-3-3 system.
As someone who has been a more than regular critic of Fabio Capello in the past, I will certainly admit that this particular selection seemed nigh on perfect. Finally succumbing to a formation that the rest of the world has been using effectively for about four years was a very good move, England looking far more likely to unlock the opposition defence than they had in previous matches.
Team selection was also much improved, as Capello finally began to live up to that statement he made a couple of years ago regarding picking the best people for the job, and not just the ‘name’ players. Scott Parker made a deserved start, Jack Wilshere continued to show his remarkable maturity and Darren Bent was the ideal man to get amongst the tall Welsh backline.
As ever, the problem with Capello is not that he made these decisions, but the fact it took him so long to do so. Why did England not adopt the formation against the Germans in the World Cup final, where the midfield was stretched to breaking point by the fluent central German movements? Why was a player of Scott Parker’s reliability not given a proper chance earlier, especially given the ineffectiveness of men such as Frank Lampard and Gareth Barry during the same tournament?
It is this stubbornness to change that has meant that England are around six months behind in their progress: had the weakness in the traditional 4-4-2 formation been admitted to after the 0-0 stinker against Algeria at the World Cup, more progress may have been made. You do wonder just how much the Italian’s stubbornness will have slowed progression of a whole side by the time his contract runs out.