Capello in World Cup defeat as new venture placed on ice

LONDON - Fabio Capello experienced his first loss of the England 2010 World Cup campaign today, after his new commercial venture, The Capello Index, was shelved less than 24 hours after its launch amid pressure from the media.

Fabio Capello's new venture put on ice
Fabio Capello's new venture put on ice

The Capello Index was launched by the £6m a year football star himself at an event held at the London Stock Exchange yesterday. A statement about the venture to the press led with the banner "England manager unveils new formula for rating players".

Designed for football fans around the world by the England manager, in conjunction with a team of technical and digital media experts, the Capello Index boasted a new formula for objectively measuring a player's performance.

But the launch of the international player ranking system before the country's World Cup campaign in South Africa attracted criticism from some fractions of the press, with The Sun demanding "How could the FA let this happen?"

The News International tabloid added: "Since Capello took over in January of 2008, the manager has stressed the need for discipline and promoted the maxim of doing the right thing.

"He wants his players to conform to rules and regulations, yet is here giving them marks out of a 100 and exploiting them for commercial gain.

"What on earth is Capello thinking of - and how have the FA been caught out?"

After a meeting with the Football Association today, a spokesman for the Capello Index told Brand Republic: "Talks took place today, after which it was agreed that the venture will be placed on hold until after the World Cup.

"I would like to qualify that Capello was never going to be involved with rating any players during the tournament but I fear this was not fully understood in some quarters."

He added: "The Capello Index will be launched across the five major European leagues after the World Cup."

The Italian's involvement in the new website has been labelled his first "own goal" by papers today and coincides with his selection for his provisional World Cup squad.

England's 30-man provisional squad for the World Cup finals:

Goalkeepers: Joe Hart, David James, Robert Green.
Defenders: Leighton Baines, Jamie Carragher, Ashley Cole, Michael Dawson, Rio Ferdinand, Glen Johnson, Ledley King, John Terry, Matthew Upson, Stephen Warnock.
Midfielders: Gareth Barry, Michael Carrick, Joe Cole, Steven Gerrard, Tom Huddlestone, Adam Johnson, Frank Lampard, Aaron Lennon, James Milner, Scott Parker, Theo Walcott, Shaun Wright-Phillips.
Forwards: Darren Bent, Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe, Emile Heskey, Wayne Rooney.

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