Hodgson accepts Capello comparisons

22 June 2012 06:47

Roy Hodgson has admitted there is no escaping the comparisons between his management style and that of predecessor Fabio Capello in the build-up to England's Euro 2012 quarter-final with Italy.

Although Capello was in Poland for the early part of the tournament, he has now flown to Colombia. Hodgson would probably be thankful for that as it takes some of the edge away. However, Italy midfielder Daniele De Rossi claimed he would be far more concerned about England if Capello was still in charge.

"I am sure people will compare me with Capello because this is the team he qualified for this tournament," said Hodgson.

"I am sure he must still be disappointed not to be here coaching this team himself. But it will only become a hindrance if we allow it.

"Obviously there will be lots of things written that are not 100% truthful or that I wouldn't want to read or hear, but that's life. That won't stop me from preparing the team. There are no words that can affect my job with the team."

One very familiar presence bars the way, Mario Balotelli.

So much has been spoken about the enigmatic 21-year-old, who is capable of moments of outrageous brilliance and chaotic controversy in equal measure.

As a former Inter Milan player, Hodgson was aware of Balotelli's potential at a very early age, spotting him as a teenager in a high-profile youth competition when he was manager of the Italian giants.

"I knew him from his time at Inter when I watched him play in the Primavera one day so I know what a precocious talent he is," he said.

"He scored a wonderful goal against the Republic of Ireland but I won't need to tell our defenders about Mario Balotelli because they have played against him all season."

Source: PA