Capello satisfied despite defeat

Fabio Capello believes his players can learn a lot from Spain, following a 2-0 loss to the European Champions.

Capello said: “I am happy because I learned a lot - I spoke to the players and we know what we must do.

“It was very difficult but we knew it would be because Spain are one of the best teams in the world right now.

“It’s important to know where we are, what level we are at and what we have to do in order to get better.”

Spain maintained possession with ease and could have scored more than the two goals they got through David Villa and Fernando Llorente.
“In some moments we played quite well,” he added. “But when the Spanish kept the ball, we couldn’t get it back for a long time.

“In possession of the ball, there was too big a difference between the two teams.
“Technically they are very good, of course, and it is very difficult to win the ball back from them.

“But when we got the ball we didn’t use it very well and we made it easy for them to win it back off us.
“We tried to win, but away [from home] against Spain it’s not always possible to do that.”

Capello believes Spain, who won the European Championship last year, have the potential to lift the World Cup in South African next year too.
“Spain play with the same style and the same players that won Euro 2008,” said the Italian.
“They play very naturally because they know each other so well. It is almost as though they are playing from memory.

“They wait when they have got possession and they punish you as soon as you make a mistake.

“Without doubt they are one of the teams who could win the World Cup.”

Capello was not the only one to come out with praise for Spain. Frank Lampard believes Spain are the benchmark England must aim for is they are to make a serious impact in South Africa 2010.

“Probably at the moment, they are the benchmark. They won the Euros pretty comfortably and are the top team in the world at the moment.

“It showed in their confidence and the way they moved the ball. They are the top team at the moment.

“I think it’s a game we can learn from. We can definitely improve. We’re on an improvement at the moment and in qualifying we’ve been very strong. If we take the negatives out of tonight and improve on them, hopefully it will make us stronger.

“Their passing was fantastic and at times we didn’t get close enough to them to stop them doing it. But next time we’ll do better.”

Lampard expects England to improve over the next year under Fabio Capello and says there is no panic in the camp after Wednesday’s defeat.

“We need to learn but it was not a huge setback for us because it was a friendly and most people know Spain are the best team in Europe at the moment and possibly in the world,” he added.

“We don’t have to be too down, we have to look at the way they moved the ball, their confidence and their quick passing. We didn’t quite get close enough to stop them doing that and I think we can learn from it.

“We’re trying to play in a slightly different way ourselves, by getting the ball slightly wider than them. They play four in the central midfield area, all moving around, so it was quite hard to play against their midfield and you have to work hard to get very close.

“We know they were the better team tonight and we gave a goal away from a set-piece. You don’t want to do that against a team so technically good as Spain - you’d rather concede a goal like the first one, which was great ability. You can’t do much about that.

“But we’re in the middle of a big qualifying campaign and that is very important to us, so we shouldn’t get too down about a game like this. We lost the game, we have to make sure we learn our lessons and the main aim is to get to the World Cup.”

David Beckham also had something to shout about as he equalled Bobby Moore’s record of 108 caps.

“I always said I would be honoured to be up with Sir Bobby Charlton and Bobby Moore and I am very honoured by that,” he admitted after the game.

“I always worked hard at my game and I have had some great managers along the way.

“I am enjoying my football and this is what I love doing.”

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