Italy defender Fabio Cannavaro has taken a swipe at England ahead of the World Cup finals, inisting that they would not be the team they are without their Italian manager, Fabio Capello.
After failing to qualify for the 2008 European Championships under Steve McClaren, the Three Lions have gone from strength to strength under their Italian boss, and the veteran defender feels that Capello should take a lot of credit for guiding England to the World Cup finals in South Africa.
Since taking over, the former Juventus and Real Madrid manager's record has been impressive, helping England win nine of their 10 qualifying matches.
England are now one of the favourites to lift the World Cup this summer, and Cannavaro believes they have a lot to thank their manager for.
"I'm happy for his success in a place where they are a bit presumptuous sports-wise," Cannavaro told FourFourTwo magazine.
"To put themselves back in order, England had to call one of our coaches. That means that our culture clearly works."
Cannavaro played under Capello at both Juve and Real, and believes his former coach has what it takes to lead England to World Cup glory in South Africa, after years of underachieving.
He said: "Capello certainly starts from an advantageous position - his team will scare others.
"They will be among the teams to beat. Other than the Italian mentality, they have the power of a fantastic generation, with its last chance to show its true strength.
"Lampard, Gerrard, Terry are the real thing, and they are going to South Africa to win."
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