The Guardian today brings us news that Middlesbrough gaffer Gary Southgate reckons Fabio Capello’s decision to bring David Wheater along with the England squad as back-up has knackered him out…
Southgate had a whine and a moan about Capello, implying that the Italian brought Wheater along as a luxury – but that it could have a much bigger effect on poor old Middlesbrough.
Southgate’s rant went something like this: “David went in case anyone was ill.”
“The flight immediately after the Under-21 game was cancelled and he flew at 7am the next morning.
“We got an email about if from the FA on Monday. For us it’s a bigger issue than it is for them. It’s not something we can do anything about though. We have expressed that we are not happy and now we must look to Saturday.
“I don’t want to harm David’s chances with England so I don’t want to make too much of a fuss about it. The principle of him travelling with the team is brilliant. We just feel it should be one squad or the other, either the full squad or the Under 21s. That’s where I am coming from.
“I have been advised to say as little as possible but I’m not overly impressed by it. I have spoken to Stuart (Pearce, the England Under-21 coach) and to people who are close to the first-team but they have their jobs to do. Stuart has a job to do, Fabio has a job to do and I have a job to do, so the three of us are going to have disagreements about it.
“I think once David had played for the Under-21s our game against Chelsea should have taken precedence, that should have been it with England. I can’t understand why you would fly to Belarus on the day of a game and sit in the stand.” (Guardian)
With Middlesbrough facing Chelsea at the weekend this is surely the last thing that Southgate wanted, but by coming public with his gripe hasn’t the Boro boss just given Wheater a free pass to play badly at the weekend?