Mamma Capello worried about her bambino

December 14, 2007

Fabio Capello is reportedly well capable of handling himself in the media spotlight - but that will not stop the 61-year-old's mother worrying about her son's treatment as England manager.

True to the stereotype of Italy's famously matriarchal society, octogenarian Evelina Tortul fears for the well-being of the man confirmed as Steve McClaren's successor.

'I am really not very happy about this,' she told the Daily Telegraph.

'The newspapers and the television are going to be on his back all the time now, and talk badly about everything he does - whether it is good or bad.

'My peaceful days are over.'

Signora Tortul's grave reservations appear to extend beyond the levels of parental concern which might be reasonably expected in this country.

'The problem with the media is that it is fine when you are winning, but when you lose they cut your throat,' she believes.

'I'm his mother, so that is going to make me unhappy.'

The Italian press agree that Capello could be in for a rough ride once he is unveiled as the new coach of England. The 61-year-old was hugely successful as a player and even more so as a manager at clubs like AC Milan, Roma, Juventus and Real Madrid, but national sports paper La Gazzetta dello Sport wrote on Friday morning of the difficulties he might face.

Gazzetta believed only success would save Capello from the media mauling his predecessors have had to endure.

An article in the paper read: 'He who wins is not vulnerable. The media demand respect even if often they don't give it. It's not necessary to know English well, you have to know it extremely well...'

The irony of Capello's appointment was not lost on the Italians who remember the day more than three decades ago that he defined his playing career.

Turin-based sports newspaper Tuttosport, who covered Capello when he coached Juventus, said: 'Thirty-four years and one month (November 14, 1973) after his goal allowed Italy to beat England at Wembley, Capello becomes England manager.'

Capello's move to England played less prominently in Rome-based sports newspaper Corriere dello Sport, who left the story to page 17.

Corriere mentioned the player he once excluded from his Real Madrid team, David Beckham, who bounced back to help the Spanish team win the Primera Liga under Capello.

'Capello is already thinking about Beckham,' the paper said. 'David will be an important player for the new England.'