FA frustration grows over Capello Index

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The Independent Football

The Football Association today continued to demand the Capello Index remove all reference to Fabio Capello following a further climbdown from the website's creators.

Ratings for Capello's England players have now been made unavailable on the controversial site but this has failed to satisfy an increasingly-frustrated FA, who remain opposed to the Italian's name and image being associated with the venture.

They spoke again this morning to the national-team manager's representatives, who are continuing attempts to get the site shut down in its current form as quickly as possible.

The FA had been optimistic this would happen yesterday but cited technical issues as being behind the delay, although the subsequent changes to the Index suggest this is no longer an issue.

Capello claimed the website had gone live on Saturday without his approval or knowledge and demanded it be taken down.

Instead of complying, the site's creators last night published a disclaimer on the www.capelloindex.com homepage, which read: "Fabio Capello contributed, with his indisputable knowledge and experience, in the laying down of the foundations of this project: from then on, a team of professors and experts in mathematical and statistical calculations, then went on to create the system used in order to generate the ratings.

"The Capello Index cannot, and must not, be summarised as the vote given by Capello to the players, but is the result of a system which is capable of analysing and evaluating the actual performance adding various scientific variables."

The statement added: "As far as the evaluation of the performance of the players in the South African World Cup is concerned, we would like to clarify that Fabio Capello did not contribute in the formulation of the results now available online."

The FA confirmed yesterday that Capello would have no involvement with the Index while he remains England manager.

Club England managing director Adrian Bevington told the FA's official website, www.thefa.com: "After the developments of the weekend, this will not happen while Fabio is England manager.

"Fabio had absolutely no involvement in the ratings that have appeared from the World Cup and did not give his name or approval to them."

Despite the FA and Capello's best efforts, the site remained active this morning, although the ratings for England players at the World Cup had been removed.

The Capello Index was set up by the national team manager and business partner Chicco Merighi to publicly rank players' performances in South Africa.

It was shelved until after the tournament amid fears it could create a rift between the Italian and his squad.

Upon their publication at the weekend, the rankings proved to be particularly critical of Capello's own players after their dismal World Cup displays.