I made sure that I heard Giovanni Trapattoni speak after the Republic of Ireland’s game in Slovakia. I wanted to hear what his ‘English’ was like.
Clearly, he has the odd problem and, if he can’t find the ‘correct’ word, he’ll look for assistance off-stage. But I found him entirely understandable.
Even if he doesn’t quite get there all the time, I generally know what he is trying to say.
In contrast, the England coach Fabio Capello speaks in a ‘language’ that nobody understands. His interview with my colleague Mike Ingham after the Wembley match was entirely indecipherable when it went out ‘live’. I still couldn’t remotely make out what he was going on about in a clip played on a later sports desk.
This guy is paid £6 million a year plus lucrative spin-offs. Is it really too much to ask that he learns the language after over two years in the job?
Of course, whether he is understood by the media or the English public doesn’t matter if the players get what he’s on about. Watching that performance against Montenegro, I’m not sure they do.