Drink culture concerns Capello

Fabio Capello has warned his England stars they risk reducing their careers by drinking alcohol.

In his three years in charge, Capello has seen a succession of high-profile players hit the headlines due to their beer-swilling activities.

The latest were Manchester City trio Gareth Barry, Joe Hart and Adam Johnson, who ended up getting pictured at a party in student accommodation during a golfing visit to St Andrews in Scotland.

Capello has some sympathy for his players, whose lives he feels are now open to scrutiny like never before thanks to modern technology such as cameras on mobile phones.

However, the Italian knows the damage they are causing to their bodies is extensive.

"If a player drinks a lot his career will be shorter," said Capello.

"This is important. Players have to understand the effect drink has on the body.

"I don’t think it is possible to be a top athlete and drink heavily after matches."

Having spent his professional career in Italy and Spain, where alcohol tends to be consumed during meals but rarely in vast quantities away from the table, Capello was surprised to be confronted by a culture more akin to the one he experienced during brief forays into the world of rugby.

"They used to talk a lot about the ‘third-half’," he recalled.

"First half, second-half, third-half. It was really important. It was the culture of the rugby players.

"The two teams stayed together one hour.

"Now I have learned that some players drink here. But this is the English culture."

It is clearly not a culture Capello wishes to embrace.

Alcohol will be banned from England’s team hotel in Watford ahead of Wednesday’s friendly with France, which is in line with a policy Capello has stuck rigidly to throughout his time in charge, with the notable exception of that depressing World Cup night after a goalless draw with Algeria in Cape Town.

As that evening gave rise to John Terry’s astonishing public declarations about the England camp 24 hours later, it hardly counts as a success.

At least the England players’ movements were not captured on camera and flashed around the world, as was the case with Barry and his friends,

One of those was Hart, who had been pictured enjoying himself on a brief visit to Spain prior to England’s Euro 2012 qualifier with Montenegro last month.

"You can know everything about what happens in someone’s private life because of the mobile phone," said Capello.

"It can record all the time. It can take pictures. You can find everything on Facebook or Twitter.

"It is the worst thing. It is why people can speak about certain people drinking or being out.

"Players now have to be so careful with their private life because people can see everything."