Italians ponder true reasons for Capello's resignation
By Alberto Cagliano Feb 9, 2012, 17:03 GMT
Rome - The idea that Fabio Capello was just waiting for the right occasion to abandon his job at the helm of England's national football team has found several backers in his home country.
As in all break-ups, however, it is likely that both sides were looking for a plausible reason to end a relationship that began in December 2007 - its highlights including a berth in the last-16 of the 2010 World Cup and an easy qualification to Euro 2012.
Capello headed back to Italy on Thursday, less than 24 hours after his resignation over the decision by the English Football Association to strip the captain armband from John Terry, who is awaiting trial on charges of having made racist slurs against an opponent.
The 65-year-old coach said hours after resigning that he felt he had suffered 'a grave wrong' because the FA 'hurt my authority' by taking a one-sided decision about Terry.
'I have never tolerated certain kinds of interference, therefore it was easy for me to oppose this one and take the decision to leave,' he said.
Capello had been softer during an Italian television show on Sunday, when he had argued that Terry should be considered innocent until proven guilty.
But a hostile English media, which has often criticized Capello for his poor command of the English language, pounced at the opportunity, claiming he could not keep working for an employer he was at loggerheads with.
In the view of many Italians, however, Capello's detractors may have misinterpreted his words. The coach had expressed firm disagreement with the FA, but there was no trace of disobedience in his words.
'I think he should have retained the captain's armband,' Capello said. 'The fact that the board decided this (to strip it) is something that is up to them when it comes to ethics.'
Things then quickly deteriorated, and language issues were suggested again when Capello had his last meeting at the FA late Wednesday.
Trying to steer clear of nationalistic sides-taking, commentator Fabrizio Bocca of daily newspaper la Repubblica said he disagreed with Capello for backing a guy like Terry, who in 2010 lost the captaincy over a sex scandal.
But Bocca also expressed admiration for a resignation that results in Capello foregoing a contract worth 8 million euros (10.6 million dollars) a year.
That he may have seized the chance to leave was frequently stated in Italy, with hints at Capello's realization that a poor figure awaited him at Euro 2012.
Should he continue coaching in Italy, however, Capello will have no lack of estimators, beginning with Antonio Conte.
The coach of Serie A leaders Juventus said the resignation was 'a big loss for England.
'I am sorry and surprised. I have much admiration and respect for a coach who wrote important pages and won a lot,' he said.
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