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Oct 6, 2011

Carragher: England are cheating

While he has nothing against Fabio Capello personally, former England defender Jamie Carragher claims that England are "cheating" by giving the country's top football job to a foreigner.

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Carragher, 33, was called out of international retirement by Capello for the 2010 World Cup in the wake of an injury to Rio Ferdinand, but as the players prepared to fly to Montenegro for their final Euro 2012 qualifier, the Liverpool man insisted that having the national side coached by an Italian was "embarrassing" for the English game.

''If your manager's not good enough, that's your country's fault. Get a better manager. Do the coaching qualification better,'' he told talkSPORT. ''I think it's a form of cheating at international football and it's a bit embarrassing. I've got nothing against Capello. I went with him to the World Cup and got to know him a little bit. But I just think that's what international football is.''

Carragher played in the 0-0 draw with Algeria but missed the game with Slovenia and was not selected for the crushing 4-1 exit to Germany and admitted that the Italian failed in South Africa.

''Maybe it's something in our culture, or because English managers don't get the chance to win club games at the top,'' he added. ''If all the Premier League managers were English then someone would have to win the league, someone would have to win the FA Cup.

''They'd have to accumulate these trophies and that's what it was like in the past. I've got nothing against Capello - I went with him to the World Cup and got to know him a little bit there but I just think that's what international football is.

''I can't say the World Cup went great under Fabio Capello because it didn't, but getting a foreign manager is like saying, 'Well, our keeper's not good enough so we're going to go and get Buffon from Italy', or whoever it may be."

The defender does, though, concede that Capello is superior to predecessor Steve McClaren. ''Capello's got an aura about him, a presence,'' he said. ''Steve McClaren didn't have any of that coming into the job. But even if it didn't go right with him, you can't say, 'Oh, it's all right, we'll get a foreign manager now'. It's unfortunate but you have to go with the next best thing.

''Maybe it's something in our culture, or because English managers don't get the chance to win club games at the top. Benitez, Houllier, Mourinho - they've all got things about them in terms of having won the big trophies. Does that mean English managers don't get a chance in the Premier League?

''Look at Chelsea, with a 33-year-old manager (Andre Villas-Boas). In years gone by, David Moyes would have got that position, or an up-and-coming manager who's done a great job. But that doesn't happen anymore and with the national team it's about what you've achieved, what you've got in the locker.''

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