Amurawaiye Rotimi

Jul 10, 2021

4 min read


The more you think about it, the more you feel shocked by the fact that a star-studded team with Wayne Rooney, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Rio Ferdinand, John Terry couldn’t live up to the expectations at the biggest footballing tournament in the world.

You can blame the manager, the players, the goal-line technology, but the fact of the matter is, England just couldn’t get a proper blend within their group. However, there are many more things to look at than just the blend within the group of players. Here is what really went wrong for Fabio Capello and his “Golden team”

Fabio Capello established himself as one of the greatest managers in world football by reaching three consecutive champions league finals and tactically outsmarting Johan Cryuffs dream team in 1994 with a 4-0 thrashing. He was the man to bring back the golden days of England in their seemingly golden generation. Here is what went wrong.


This seems to be the easiest part of being a manager but it’s the hardest. When you have the best 11 players in the world(literally) there is indecision. England played a 4-4-2 instead of the preferred 4-3-3 by the general public. The two up front were Wayne Rooney who was recovering from an injury he picked up against Bayern Munich in the Champions league that year and Emily Heskey. Wayne Rooney was in no doubt under a lot of pressure, if you need goals to take off some of that pressure then you need Michael Owen alongside you and NOT Emily Heskey. Here is Michael Owen take on it.

“Not only did he cut short a hard-earned international career with absolutely no explanation whatsoever, but he also went on to be one of the least effective England managers ever.

“He was absolutely crap. In my opinion, Fabio Capello caused catastrophic damage to both my career and English football in general and got paid handsomely to do so.”

_Michael Owen


An overflowing squad of world-class players would obviously have its problems. There were multiple players in every position who could feasibly start for England. John Terry, Rio Ferdinand, Jamie Carragher and Sol Campbell were all doing extremely well for their respective clubs. But only two of them could start, Terry and Ferdinand were not able to click together as a centre-back partnership. England’s midfield alone had ‘Ridiculous talent’. Gerard and Lampard in the same midfield? How are you not winning every international tournament? It goes to show that even with the best players,there has to be some sort of chemistry within them or they are not at all effective.


Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool could not co-exist in the same team.

Players like Lampard, Ferdinand(Rio) and Gerard were more focused on their club teams than their country. These players never actually prioritised international football during their intense battles in the top 4 of England.They were so engrossed with their clubs that they utterly compromised, and phoned it in with their country. There was always a massive sense of difference and a lack of unity in the England camp.

England are now in the finals in the Euros. After 55 years, they seem to be finally getting right. With the emergence of talents like Phil Foden, Mason mount, Kalvin Philips, and Bukayo Saka,England look like Euro Winners. What did Southgate do differently? Are the new generation of talents more commited to their countries? Or is it just the ‘Money Mase’(Mason Mount) effect? Get the answers to these below!

Kindly wait for my next publication. Here is the link of the video of the England players of 2010 confirming what went wrong in their generation.

Oscar Ihua Odunayo Adeyinka Amurawaiye Adeoye Amurawaiye Stacy Owens