Exasperated Capello can't control Rooney

Manager admits when it comes to Wayne's world, you have to take the bad with the good

And to think that Fabio Capello is the manager Wayne Rooney once said scares him the most. "He is fearsome," the errant striker said of his new Italian mentor a little more than two years ago, explaining that habit of always being on his shoulder and his case in training sessions.

Well, Capello evidently doesn't put the fear of God into Rooney any more. The morning after a night of tempestuous weather and emotions in Podgorica, England's manager declared that he is powerless to affectthe temperament of the player whose third red card of 2011, his career eighth, suggests that the Stereophonics album name tattooed on to his forearm – Just Enough Education To Perform – will always be the appropriate one where he is concerned.

"You can't read everything," Capello said. "If he scores a goal what do you think about what happened in 45 minutes, 60 minutes before? The player is difficult to understand. When you have one player so good, so important it is difficult to read everything he will do in a game. He can do something fantastic and he can make a silly mistake."

Once and always a flawed genius, the conclusion seemed to be, and that Capello has accepted, that the best player by a mile might combust at any moment. If the Uefa disciplinary commission which, the FA have already been advised, may sit to consider Rooney's dismissal to extend the statutory one-game ban to two, it is quite possible England's tournament will be on the rocks.

In a 16-team tournament, very few teams are a pushover and – based on an assumption that the most successful nations in qualifying will win the play-offs – the "easiest" nations England could face without Rooney are Denmark, Estonia, Croatia or Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The upside of his ban, if one exists, is that he would be fresh to unleash on the Continent's elite if England do progress towards the second phase without him.

The friendlies against Spain and Portugal must be occasions for Capello to do away with Rooney and focus on those who can serve him from the start next summer.

"[It will be] a minimum one [game ban]. I hope one," Capello said. "But I need to find a solution. I selected five forwards, and two forwards like [Jermain] Defoe and like [Daniel] Sturridge [were not here.] They are really good players and for that reason I have the solution for the games Rooney can't play."

Danny Welbeck is the more exciting prospect; perhaps the greatest beneficiary of Rooney's madness, whose involvement could see the core of Capello's side being a Manchester United contingent, with Chris Smalling, Tom Cleverley and Phil Jones all under the age of 22.

Jones is a name on which to linger. His debut was neither flawless nor peerless but a source of huge satisfaction to Capello. "You can't speak only about Rooney," Capello said. "I think today I saw a really good player.Number two. Phil Jones. Oh, guys, this is really good news for me. The news is not about Rooney. The news is about a really good young player who played really well, without fear, with personality, going forward, defending well. I think it will be inter-esting in the next game we play to see some players: whether Phil Jones can play central defence for example."

The story is Rooney, though, and how his temperament will always deter from an aim he expressed two years ago, to graduate from the ranks of the great players to be "one of the greats". Internationally, he is inneither category. He has not scored a goal in such a gathering of nations since 2004.

Capello has learned to read his mind as best he can, bringing Frank Lampard into play after little more than an hour on Friday, for example, when he saw Rooney's game descending into frustration. "I felt the position would bring more solutions [for Rooney]. He could have more one-on-ones and attack the space, I thought it was a solution but, OK, probably it would have been better leaving him as a forward," Capello reflected.

But it is a unmistakable leap of faith that he must take. "Why I trust him? Because he's a really good player, a really important player. Because he makes the difference when he is at the top," he concluded.

"For a long time he has been the best player of the national team and I'm sure he will be really important at the Euros. He will be really important because he is very proud."

How Arshavin excelled after ban

Andrey Arshavin was in a similar situation to Wayne Rooney before the last European Championship finals and appeared to benefit from it.

Banned for the first two group matches after retaliating against an Andorra player in the final qualifying game, he returned fresh against Sweden and was man of the match in a 2-0 win. That put the Russians into the quarter-finals, in which he was outstanding again in a 3-1 win over Holland, making two goals and scoring the third.

After Russia lost their semi-final to the eventual winners, Spain, Arshavin and his striking partner Roman Pavlyuchenko secured moves to the Premier League with Arsenal and Spurs respectively.

Steve Tongue

News
Alan Bennett has criticised the “repellent” reality shows which dominate our screens
tvBut he does like Stewart Lee
Life and Style
The Google Doodle celebrating the start of the first day of autumn, 2014.
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
News
Former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin, left, with her daughter, Bristol
newsShe's 'proud' of eldest daughter, who 'punched host in the face'
Sport
New Zealand fly-half Aaron Cruden pictured in The Zookeeper's Son on a late-night drinking session
rugby
Arts and Entertainment
Salmond told a Scottish television chat show in 2001that he would also sit in front of a mirror and say things like,
tvCelebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Life and Style
Carol O'Brien, whose son Rob suffered many years of depression
healthOne mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
Arts and Entertainment
The cover of Dark Side of the Moon
musicCan 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition? See for yourself
Life and Style
food + drink
News
Rob Merrick's Lobby Journalists were playing Ed Balls' Labour Party MPs. The match is an annual event which takes place ahead of the opening of the party conference
newsRob Merrick insistes 'Ed will be hurting much more than me'
News
A cabin crew member photographed the devastation after one flight
news
Voices
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits