Simon Barnes on Fabio Capello


Fabio Capello is untouchable, halfway between Sir Alf Ramsey and God.


We believe in Him.

The England team have abandoned their clown's jalopy with square wheels and explosions and bits falling off. Now they are cruising on in a six-wheeled pink Rolls-Royce bearing the numberplate FAB 10. There is no ducking the matter: England are go and Capello is the Lady Penelope of the new world.

It is almost impossible for an Italian to be monosyllabic, but Capello has come as near to mastering this as is linguistically possible. In his masterly near-silence, he gives an impression of mysterious and limitless strength, endless knowledge and total mastery, and right now, it seems as if these things have a basis in fact.

Capello is beyond criticism.

He is unimprovable.

There is no such thing as a so-so England manager. He is either a genius or a fool.

The fundamental art of management is to build a church of true believers.

Right now, Capello has believers and this is the most precious of gifts. How to find it? How to maintain it? First, you must be a man to whom self-doubt is a stranger. A belief in your own omnipotence is the first qualification for a successful manager.

There is no point in striving for a rational assessment of Capello, because the process he presides over is irrational.

He can do no wrong

Until April.



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