Capello set for England job

December 13, 2007

Fabio Capello is expected to be confirmed as England manager within the next 24 hours.

Although the illustrious former Juventus, AC Milan and Real Madrid coach flew back to Italy last night to fulfil a prior engagement, talks with the Football Association went so well, it is now only a matter of time before the 61-year-old returns to become Steve McClaren's successor.

Capello spent yesterday at Wembley with senior FA figures, including chief executive Brian Barwick and director of football development Sir Trevor Brooking thrashing out the final details of a lucrative contract and outlining his vision for the future.

Providing Barwick can convince the FA board Capello is the right man for the job - and that should not take much doing given the appointment has already received the support of Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger - Capello can expect to receive a call at some point today asking him to come back to London for his official unveiling.

No time-scale has been offered on the formal announcement but if it does not happen on Friday, it will be confirmed very early next week.

FA officials could hardly have been more enthusiastic about the impression Capello made during his brief visit, leaving little room for argument about how Barwick and Brooking have delivered the 'world class' replacement for McClaren they promised in the aftermath of the abysmal Euro 2008 qualifying campaign.

'I can confirm that Brian Barwick and Sir Trevor Brooking have held talks with Fabio Capello in London,' said FA director of communications Adrian Bevington.

'I am pleased to say that these discussions were extremely positive and without any problems.

'Fabio has tonight returned to Italy to honour a prior commitment.

'Understandably, further talks are now taking place between Fabio's advisors and ourselves.'

The Italian will doubtless return home for the festive period after his first public engagements are completed, before returning to England in the new year.

His first official task will be to head the FA delegation at a World Cup fixtures meeting due to take place in Zagreb in mid-January.

He will then discuss England's summer plans, which could yet include a meeting with Scotland at Wembley on May 28, before finalising the squad for his first match in charge against Switzerland at Wembley on February 6.

David Beckham, who he dropped and then reinstated to his Real Madrid side last season, will almost certainly be included for his 100th cap.