World Cup

Capello signs new Russia contract

Former England coach Fabio Capello will lead Russia until after the 2018 World Cup.
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Head coach Fabio Capello has committed his future to the Russian national team until the end of the 2018 World Cup.

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The 67-year-old Italian replaced Dick Advocaat in the role in July 2012 and supervised qualification for the 2014 World Cup finals as Russia finished top of Group F, one point ahead of Portugal.

Russia will host the summer finals in four years' time and, with the country therefore qualifying automatically, former England manager Capello will be able to start planning for the World Cup once the 2016 European Championships in France are over.

In a statement published on the Russian Football Union's official website on Friday, Capello said: "I am grateful to the president of the RFU and to the Russian minister of sport for their confidence in me.

"I am very pleased to continue working with Russia. We have big plans and I will do everything I can to ensure the Russian fans are happy."

Having signed a two-year contract in 2012, there were reports that Capello - who coached with great success at AC Milan, Juventus, Roma and Real Madrid - could be tempted into making a return to club management following the Brazil finals.

He was linked with the vacancy at Tottenham following the December sacking of Andre Villas-Boas, but caretaker boss Tim Sherwood was duly handed the role on a permanent basis to end speculation.

RFU president Nikolai Tolstoy said: "We are pleased that such a highly qualified coach, Fabio Capello, will continue to work in Russian football.

"The document stipulates that Fabio Capello will oversee the institution of all national Russian football teams and he will be assisted by Russian specialists at the headquarters of the national team."

It is not the first time Capello has managed to negotiate an extended contract on the eve of a major international tournament.

On June 2 2010, only 10 days before England were due to meet the United States in the opening group-stage match of their World Cup campaign in South Africa, the Football Association announced Capello had signed an amended contract running until the 2012 European Championships.

The renewal, which saw a break clause removed from his deal, was at the time lauded as a boost for the England set-up given growing speculation the Italian had been ready to take over at Inter Milan.

A disappointing first-round exit at the hands of Germany followed but he kept his job despite coming under fire for the team's poor performances and his imposition of a strict regime at England's training base.

After ensuring England's qualification for the Euros in Ukraine and Poland, Capello resigned in February 2012 after the FA removed the captaincy from defender John Terry against his wishes.

The Chelsea player was facing an allegation of racially abusing Anton Ferdinand and was later banned and fined by the FA. He was found not guilty of a criminal charge of using racist language.

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