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Capello 'ignored warning signs from England warm-up games'

Former England striker Cyrille Regis has said Fabio Capello failed to take heed of the warning signs his team were showing in their World Cup warm-up matches.

The England squad returned to the UK today after a disastrous tournament in South Africa which ended on Sunday in humiliating fashion with a 4-1 defeat to Germany in the last 16.

Prior to that Capello's side had struggled through the group stage, but Regis - who won five caps for England in the 1980s - believes problems were already in evidence during the team's three warm-up fixtures against Mexico, Japan and South African side the Platinum Stars.

"Although the manager usually carries the can, the players didn't perform well and they have to be culpable as well," Regis told Press Association Sport.

"But part of the manager's job is to problem-solve, find out what is going on, why the players aren't performing well and rectify it.

"Going back to Mexico, Japan and the Platinum Stars, it was clear that they weren't playing well and didn't function as a team.

"There were problems and they didn't look organised. Sadly, Capello never fixed it."

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Capello is waiting to discover from the Football Association whether he is to retain his position as England head coach.

Asked if he felt the Italian should lose his job, Regis said: "I'm not saying that, but we have to look at what went wrong, why he didn't fix it and what was required of him."

At times during the World Cup England's players looked as if they were having trouble coping with the weight of expectation upon them and Regis feels their relationship with Capello lacked the kind of warmth shown by the Argentina team towards their coach Diego Maradona.

"Part of any manager's job is to take out the fear, to relieve that pressure," Regis said.

"You look at Argentina and the response from the players towards Diego Maradona.

"When Carlos Tevez scored a fantastic goal they went over and hugged Maradona and there is a real affection for him there. We didn't see that in the England side."

:: Regis was speaking at the Hawthorns, where he was raising the Barclays Premier League flag to celebrate West Brom's return to the top flight.


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