After Real sports director Pedja Mijatovic announced the board's decision to axe him yesterday afternoon, Capello emerged to say: "Now that the decision by the Board of Directors has been made public, I would like to thank Real Madrid for allowing me to guide this great side for a second time, when I was able to contribute to winning La Liga.

"I am grateful to the squad, the coaching team, the staff, the managers and sporting director Franco Baldini for all their support," added the tactician, who will be joined by Baldini in his departure.

"I would also like to mention the fans in Spain and around the world - without a doubt the best around - to whom I would like to reiterate my thanks for their unconditional support."