Wednesday, 09 September, 2009
Manager's joy at World Cup qualification.
Fabio Capello could not hide his delight after the Three Lions thrashsed Croatia to qualify for the World Cup finals in style.
The England Manager was in ecstatic mood after two goals each from Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard were followed by a late effort from Wayne Rooney to keep up England’s 100 per cent record with eight wins out of eight and make sure of qualification for South Africa with two games to spare.
“We played really well and I am very happy," said Capello.
“Victory here, in front of our supporters, was really, really important because we have trained hard over the past ten days and I was very pleased with the performance of the players.”
The 5-1 scoreline was even better than last year’s 4-1 win in Croatia, and Capello admitted the two games were two different types of football, leading to an aggregate score of 9-2
“That is not important," he said. "What matters most was the performances and the six points we got. In Zagreb we were fast, we pressed a lot, and played in a different style.
“At Wembley it was different again. In the first 20 minutes we pressed a lot, we kept the ball and the performance of the players was fantastic.”
Much was made of Slaven Bilic’s pre-match comments that the Three Lions had lost some of their Englishness, but Capello said: ”Ï spoke with Bilic about this and he said only the style and the organisation was different, not the spirit of the players.”
Reaching South Africa with two games to spare means Capello can now start looking at possibilities for his World Cup squad in the remaining games. Does that mean there might be new faces in the running?
“I think so. I have to decide, but we have time to decide.
"We've achieved our target early. I think this was the best performance under me. We played fast, pressed the ball and our movement was fantastic."
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