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Video nasties key to England’s success

sports Updated: Oct 15, 2009 01:26 IST

AFP
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John Terry has revealed that video nasty sessions with Fabio Capello have played a key role in England's successful World Cup qualifying campaign.

Capello's side booked their place at next year's finals in South Africa with two games to spare after recording eight successive Group Six victories.

It is an impressive transformation for a team that failed to qualify for Euro 2008 under Steve McClaren and Terry believes Capello's willingness to embarrass players in front of their team-mates when they make mistakes has been instrumental in the revival.

When Capello took over from McClaren, one of the first things the former AC Milan and Real Madrid boss noticed was how little effort England's defenders sometimes made to track back after they had joined an attack. To highlight the point to the players and shame them into improving on that and other mistakes he has held video sessions for the whole squad in which he uses a red laser pen to show errors and point out the guilty parties in the room.

Even England captain Terry has been singled out twice by Capello during the trial by television. "When the manager first came in he watched videos of a few games and after that he really wanted the players to work a lot harder," Terry said.

"If a defender goes forward, it's not a jog back it's a sprint back to get in position and get your shape.

"I think that is a very Italian way to do it. Now the players are working really hard to each other.

"When the manager stops the video and there you are jogging back at three-quarter pace, it really does make a difference.

"You know the minute in the match when you made your mistake and you are thinking 'please don't stop it now'. He stops it and gets his red beam and flashes it at you.

"It's always in your mind. It's good. Now it's cemented in our minds and everyone is doing it naturally. The manager is very clever like that."

Despite their improvement under Capello, Terry admits England are still prone to the kind of mistakes that will prove costly in South Africa.

The Chelsea defender believes they can improve significantly and he said: "We've come a really long way from where we were last year but we feel it is the minimum requirement to be in a major competition. "We've still got another 20 or 30 percent to improve all over the field. I'm sure the manager will work on that in the next few games." Securing their place at the World Cup in style has given England's players and fans a much-needed morale boost after their failure to reach Euro 2008.

But Capello sees no reason for any celebrations yet. He won't get the bunting out until England win the World Cup itself. "This is nothing. No celebration. I hope to celebrate in July," he said.