Int Football – Becks: We will win under Capello


David Beckham is backing Fabio Capello to help England finally realise their potential as he prepares to win his 100th cap in Wednesday’s friendly international with France in Paris.

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Beckham has impressed Capello sufficiently during pre-season with Los Angeles Galaxy to earn a recall after being overlooked for last month’s clash with Switzerland at Wembley.

The pair were reunited on Monday for the first time since they shared in Real Madrid’s La Liga title triumph at the end of last season.

And Beckham is adamant the Italian has the qualities to turn England from nearly men into major championship contenders.

Beckham said: “We shook hands and it was nice to see him (Capello) because the last time was when we were celebrating on the field at the Bernabeu. I’ve not seen him since.

“He is, without doubt, the right man for the England job. He’s got his own ways, he knows how to get teams playing. That’s what our country needs. We need to get the confidence back of the nation and we can start by playing some good games.

“We’ve definitely got the right man for that. He’s started off well. The regime has totally changed round and players have recognised that.”

Beckham believes the time has come for England to start delivering the goods after reaching three successive quarter-finals but then failing to qualify for the Euro 2008 finals.

He said: “I’ve sat up here, in front of the media, and said ‘this is a competition we’re going to do well and we’re going to perform’ – and we haven’t done that.

“It’s embarrassing to a certain extent when we promise things and say how good we are as a team and don’t fulfil that potential.

“But I’ll say this again, that we do have some of the most talented players in the world and it’s really all about fulfilling that potential.

“Now we’ve got a manager who knows how to get the best out of players.

“If you’re not playing well and don’t respond, you won’t be in the team. We’ve got a manager with very strong beliefs, but it’s about fulfilling that potential on the pitch now and he can help us achieve that.”

Beckham admits he was “hurt” when overlooked by the then England coach Steve McClaren after standing down as England captain following the 2006 World Cup finals in Germany.

But he concedes it gave him a desire to prove once again he was worth his place in the squad and an even greater hunger to play for his country.

He said: “Nothing really changed when I was left out by Steve McClaren but I came back realising I had to prove to people again that I deserved to be here.

“Whether people felt that, at the time, it was easy for me because I’d had a good relationship with the previous managers and they were just picking me for my name, I don’t know.

“I had to prove to people that I deserved to be here. That’s always been my motivation, the thing that keeps me going. If I play well enough, I believe I’ll be in the team.

“I started enjoying it more when I came back in. I’d seen how it could be taken away from me, and I didn’t want that to happen again. I started enjoying the game more and playing with even more passion, if that was possible. There was a new belief there.”

Beckham’s family and close associates will be uppermost in his mind if he wins his 100th cap in Paris as they have helped him through a rollercoaster career.

He said: “My family have been there from the word go, from my parents through to my boys and Victoria now. They’ve been through the ups and downs, the hard times in my career.

“Trust me, when I’ve had the down times and the hard times, they’ve pulled me through.

“Without them and people like Sir Alex Ferguson and my team-mates, particularly in 1998 after I was sent off in the World Cup, I might not have been able to get through that time.

“There are plenty of people I’ll have to thank, from managers and coaches, for getting me this far. There will be quite a list.”

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