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Capello says England player confidence was rock bottom

Fabio Capello says England's players were shot of all confidence upon his appointment as coach.

Capello believes the most important task he has had since taking charge of the national side in the wake of their non-qualification for Euro 2008 under Steve McClaren was renewing the players' self-belief.

"When I arrived and saw the players, they looked a spent force. They were scared and without any sense of belonging," the Italian is quoted as saying.

"It was really surprising. But I rebuilt England psychologically.

"I did a lot of talking and laid down the rules. I restored pride to the shirt.

"I tightened the bolts and imposed seriousness, and we now have a concrete group."

So confident is Capello in that group that he is happy to set his sights all the way in South Africa.

"For me, not arriving in the World Cup final would be a failure," he added.

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Tribal Football Staff

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