England will be in safe hands

Fabio Capello insists he will forget all about Robert Green's woeful World Cup blunder when he selects his goalkeeper for tonight's showdown with Algeria.

Fabio Capello insists he will forget all about Robert Green's woeful World Cup blunder when he selects his goalkeeper for tonight's showdown with Algeria.

Once again Capello does not intend to tell his players which of them have been selected for the second Group C game until a couple of hours before kick-off.

That means Green will not find out whether he is going to keep his place despite the calamitous error that cost England victory against the United States last weekend, or lose it to David James, who was heavily backed to make a return yesterday.

But Capello insists when he does make the call, it will not be done on the basis of a single incident.


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“When I chose Green last week he was in good form,” said Capello.

“He played very well in the first half of the friendly against Mexico. And even last week, the outcome was good for the team because usually you would lose the game after a mistake like that.

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“But I have to choose the value of different players, not just think about their mistakes. I have to justify selecting the keeper I choose.''

Again it leaves Capello open to the claim he is causing unnecessary doubt by delaying his announcement.

The Italian robustly defended his decision though, insisting his early days in management taught him not to make major calls too quickly.

“In my first year in management, I would tell the players if they were playing on the day before,'' recalled Capello, who celebrates his 64th birthday today.

“I would speak with them after dinner. But three times someone got injured and then it was difficult to get the other player ready to play. So I stopped. I have not done it since.''

There were contradictory clues in last night's final training session as Green did more work in the team section, but James and Joe Hart kept goal behind John Terry and Jamie Carragher, who seem certain to start in central defence.

More certainty can be attached to the likelihood of Emile Heskey partnering Wayne Rooney in attack for a game England should win, but Capello will take nothing for granted.

“I respect the Algeria,'' said the England boss.

“They have scored a lot from counter-attacks and set-pieces and I have learned a lot about them.

“It would be a big mistake to think this game will be easy.''

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