Football

Fabio Capello does a 'Mike Bassett' and calls up wrong player

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Former England manager Fabio Capello has had an absolute nightmare this week as Russia boss, as he called up the wrong player.

The ageing Capello called up Lokomotiv Moscow reserve Andrey Semyonov, when he was actually after Terez Grony's player of the same name. 

His error is not too dissimilar to comedy character Mike Bassett, who called up "Lambert" and "Butler" to his fictional England squad, when in fact he had just listed a cigarette brand. 

The Russia Football Union were forced into an ashen-faced apology, and put the situation right, as reported by The Mirror

Semyonov #1 (the reserve) was shocked to say the least at seeing his name on the list. "I was surprised too to put it mildly, but I do have an experience with the Under-21 team. I will do my best to get a real call-up in the future."

Capello's side are hopeful of going far in this summer's World Cup, with a relatively straight forward group of Belgium, Algeria and South Korea. Should they qualify, they will play one of France, Honduras, Switzerland and Ecuador, and Capello will hope to improve on his disastrous World Cup of 2010 as England manager.

Capello recently signed a contract which will see him in charge of Russia until the end of the 2018 World Cup, which is of course held in their country. It will surely prove to be his final role as a manager, with him being 72 when that tournament ends. 

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