Fabio Capello hoping to shine under pressure

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The Independent Football

Fabio Capello is crossing his fingers that intense pressure will continue to bring out the best in him.

England tackle Bulgaria in their opening Euro 2012 qualifier at Wembley tonight with the Italian again under fierce scrutiny.

Many believe that unless the Three Lions collect at least four points from a double-header that also includes a trip to Switzerland on Tuesday, Capello's job prospects will be minimal.

Yet the 64-year-old has faced similar situations before. And he is confident the response will be positive.

"No, this is not the worst situation I have been in. It has been the same two or three times. Once at Madrid, once at Milan, and now," he said.

"I hope the pressure brings out the best in me. Up to this point it usually has."

In fact, at Milan he ended up getting the sack.

However, Capello has survived enough difficult periods not to get too worked up by this one, especially as he considers most of the pressure to be media generated.

"You create the God, and you create the monster, no?" said Capello, staring straight back at the inquisitors he believes are responsible for the construction and dismantling of reputations.

"I remember what you wrote about me a short time before this period.

"I live the same moment when you write well of me as when you write badly of me. You have to live with the pressure. It is my job.

"This is my team. We lost one game in the World Cup after one big mistake from the referee.

"You don't remember this. But after this, your opinion about me changed completely.

"You wrote a lot of things differently. But I live with this situation."

Strangely for Capello, who wouldn't even tell his squad which goalkeeper was playing until two hours before kick-off in South Africa, he has virtually announced his team.

The doubt is at right-wing, where Theo Walcott will probably edge out Adam Johnson to join a team that contains eight players who lost that knockout round game to Germany in Bloemfontein.

Phil Jagielka and Joe Hart are the other newcomers in a team Capello insists will be created in the modern style.

"Usually now, teams play 9-1," he said.

"All the defenders have to go forward, all the forwards have to defend.

"You can see it in all the games. Against Bulgaria we will play with one forward when they have the ball and, when we go forward, we will have more."