Capello had stripped John Terry of the captaincy after Terry’s affair with Wayne Bridge’s ex partner
Capello was praised by the media who thought he handled the situation well and lived up to his reputation as a strong but fair boss. However, it was the first time that cracks were starting to appear in the squad.
When they got to the World Cup in South Africa, Capello had selected a secluded hotel for the team to stay in. It was an attempt to avoid the media circus that had followed the player’s wives and girlfriends around at the previous World Cup. The decision drew some criticism as the players were bored for hours on end each day.
They may have had too much time to think and worry about their upcoming games because when the tournament started the England players froze. After a nervous start, Steven Gerrard put them in 1-0 up against the USA. However, a terrible mistake from goalkeeper, Rob Green, let the Americans back in. The game finished 1-1 and it was followed by a very poor performance against Algeria. They lacked any imagination and the fans booed them off the pitch after the game finished 0-0.
Well beaten by Germany
Their final group game was against Slovenia. England managed a 1-0 win thanks to a Jermain Defoe goal but the performance was far from convincing. They scraped through to the knock out stage having finished second in the group behind the USA.
They faced Germany in the first knock-out round and were beaten 4-1. Frank Lampard had a goal disallowed after officials failed to spot that the ball had clearly bounced over the line. That would have made the score 2-2 but it would have been more than England deserved.
England went home and Capello was criticised for being too strict by many of the same people who had once praised his strong disciplinary stance. He was also criticised for his squad selection and failure to get the best out of his team.
Euro 2012 qualifiers
Capello felt that the players were mentally fragile. It would have been extremely difficult to have foreseen this as they had performed so well in the qualifiers. He vowed to stay on and help England reach Euro 2012.
Capello helped England get over their World Cup troubles and they enjoyed another good qualifying campaign. They remained unbeaten and qualified as group winners. During the campaign, Capello reinstated Terry as England captain, saying that losing the armband for a year was a long enough punishment.
Second John Terry scandal
It was a decision that was heavily criticised and would come back to haunt him. Terry became involved in another scandal when he was alleged to have racially abused QPR defender, Anton Ferdinand. There was speculation as to whether Terry would now be able to share a dressing room with his defensive partner and Anton’s brother, Rio Ferdinand.
The case was also going to be heard in court with the trail date set for after the tournament. The FA decided it was inappropriate for Terry to remain as captain and went above Capello’s head to strip him of the captaincy for the second time.
Capello was furious and resigned four months before the tournament as he felt it was his job to decide how to discipline his players.