20100622

Capello "fell out with many players" -- Ancelotti book


Fabio Capello should brace himself for more critical scrutiny of the disciplinarian man-management style that has seen his approval rating as England coach begin to slide for the first time during the team's stuttering World Cup campaign.

It will come with the English publication later this year of Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti's candid memoir, Preferisco la Coppa.

The book's content attracted headlines in England with its release in Milan because it revealed candid details of Ancelotti's meetings with Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich while he was still negotiating to become manager at Stamford Bridge.

His views on Capello received an airing in some newspapers, but it was the descriptions of what Abramovich said and did in supposedly secret liaisons that was the talking point, raising suggestions that it might jeopardise Ancelotti's move to London.

That is unlikely to be the case this time after tensions surfaced between Capello and his players in the wake of England's poor performance against Algeria, culminating in a public rebuke for ex-captain John Terry.

Ancelotti's last season as a player at Milan coincided with Capello's first there as coach and Preferisco la Coppa contained the following observation:

He [Capello] was very serious, meticulous and I don't think there is anybody better than him at reading a game. On a human level, well, that's a different story. He didn't have a dialogue with us, he just told us what to do. And, unsurprisingly, he fell out with many players. For example, I remember Ruud Gullit pinning him up against the wall. The rest of us intervened to break it up, even though, secretly, I think many players were cheering for Ruud.

The book, Carlo Ancelotti: The Beautiful Games of an Ordinary Genius, will be published in September by Rizzolo International Publications.

Co-written with Alessandro Alciato, the book looks at Ancelotti's career, first as a midfielder for Milan, where he won consecutive European Cups, and then as manager, in which time he won the Champions League twice and lost the final in Istanbul to Liverpool on penalties after the English side's extraordinary comeback from 3-0 down.

The Italian title Preferisco la Coppa was translated here as "I prefer the Cup" although it had less to do with football than with coppa, the salami typical of Ancelotti's home town, Parma, the eating of which tends to be associated with ordinary, working people, in contrast to the more expensive and fashionable prosciutto di parma.

It reflects both Ancelotti's sense of humour and the strong connection he feels with his background, as emphasised by the phrase "an ordinary genius" in the subtitle.

The publishers say Ancelotti is 'fearless in his portrayals of friends and foes alike' and that 'the many candid stories of mischief and locker room antics will appeal to all who follow the game.'

To pre-order Carlo Ancelotti: The Beautiful Games of an Ordinary Genius, click the link.

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