So, after exactly a week of every Tom, Dick and Harry lending their press-influenced views on the most boring scandal ever to grace football, it took Fabio Capello just 12 minutes to deliver the bad news to John Terry.
The Chelsea skipper will captain the England team no more.
I’m disappointed. Not in Capello (well, not entirely – read on to hear why); he did the only thing he could after the relentless media-led pressure we’ve witnessed over the last seven days. It didn’t matter how many people – like me – failed to see the connection between a footballer’s extra marital relations and his ability to captain the national team; there was simply no way Terry could continue to be captain with such a black cloud hanging over him. Capello did the right thing.
Incidentally, it wouldn’t surprise me if we’ve all actually forgotten what the offence was, exactly – it seems so irrelevant now.
I’m continually impressed by an England manager who clearly doesn’t mess about. While pressure undoubtedly led him to this decision, you can be sure he made it confidently, quickly and without a second thought of what anyone else might think. He wants to win the World Cup and doesn’t give a toss who he upsets on the way. I like that.
I don’t like his decision to simply realign the captaincy, though. Ferdinand? Really? He may have been second in line but has hardly played all season. When he was playing, he was hardly at the top of his game. Yes, he’s had a chequered past, too, but this isn’t the root cause of my dismay today.
If anything, Capello should be assessing whether or not Ferdinand is fit for a place in the World Cup squad at all, let alone lead it.
He’s missed a trick here, Capello. Gerrard should have taken Terry’s place. No?
I’m willing to be proved wrong though, Fabio. Please don’t let this uncharacteristically weak decision make a mockery of my praise for you above…