Heskey named and shamed

Striker revealed as secret texter who incurred wrath of Capello at England dinner

The England player who caused Fabio Capello to lose his temper by texting on his phone during a squad dinner has been revealed as Emile Heskey.
The Independent understands that the Aston Villa striker was spotted by the England manager during the recent international week breaking squad rules.

The England manager responded furiously when he saw Heskey texting and shouted at his entire squad, telling them that they had to respect the rules he had laid down for England camps. Phones are banned from meal-times, one of the many rules that Capello brought to the England set-up when he took over in January last year.

The latest incident is understood to have taken place in Ukraine, before the World Cup qualifier in Dnipropetrovsk in which Heskey played. After the 1-0 defeat, Capello's only one in World Cup qualifying, Heskey was left out of the squad for the final game against Belarus at Wembley. There has been no suggestion the incident cost Heskey his place in the team.

The dressing down from Capello was the talk of the England camp and, having been admonished by their manager, they are understood to have finished their dinner in silence. Capello demands that the squad be on time for meal-times and that they come in to the dining room together and leave it together.

The News of the World reported on Sunday the story of Capello's anger at a player using his phone at meal time, but the newspaper did not name the offending texter. The incident has been widely discussed among England players and it was only a matter of time before Heskey was outed as the man responsible for Capello's outburst.

It was also reported that Capello threw a metal tray against a wall in fury when he spotted Heskey texting. However, it is understood that his anger was not quite so well choreographed. Instead the England manager accidentally dropped the metal meal cover on his plate when picking up his dinner. Then when his players looked up at the noise, Capello spotted Heskey and began his haranguing.

Despite the nine wins in World Cup qualification, Capello has always been careful to keep his players in a tightly-controlled environment. He does not allow them to eat what they like on England trips and the only snacks available are fruit, not the chocolate bars once on offer. The control over what players can eat has led to rumours about secret supplies being smuggled inside their luggage.

The incident over the secret texter demonstrates that Capello is not prepared to give an inch on his rules as England gear up for the World Cup finals in South Africa. The importance that was once placed on finding a base that could keep the players amused – with Xboxs, table tennis, pool and darts – is no longer a priority. The South Africa base will be austere compared to the luxury of the Schlosshotel Bühlerhöhe in the Black Forest near Baden-Baden in 2006.

Capello also does not allow music to be played aloud in the dressing room on an iPod speaker dock, as is common in many Premier League clubs, including Manchester United. Instead the players are only permitted to listen to their personal MP3 players using ear phones.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
11 best bedside tables

11 best bedside tables

It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat