Fabio Capello hopes to avoid Spain and Holland in Euro 2012 draw

England manager Fabio Capello admits he is keen for his side to avoid Spain and The Netherlands in Friday's Euro 2012 draw

fabio capello
The Euro 2012 finals draw takes place on Friday PA Photos

fabio capello

England manager Fabio Capello hopes to avoid Spain and Holland in Friday’s Euro 2012 draw in Kiev.

England will be in pot two and could draw the reigning world champions and Holland in pot one alongside hosts Poland and Ukraine.

Croatia, Greece, Portugal, and Sweden make up pot three, while the bottom group is composed of Denmark, France, Czech Republic, and Giovanni Trapattoni’s Republic of Ireland.

“I think you need to avoid [the highest ranked teams in] the first pot, so Spain and Holland,” said Capello. “After that there are also Portugal and France in the third and fourth pots, and these are the teams I would prefer to avoid in the group stage.

“You also need to be careful with Ukraine and Poland, as they can improve a lot with home advantage. It is possible they could be the surprise of the tournament.

“I remember watching some games at Euro 2008 and Switzerland and Austria, the host nations, were very unlucky. They played very well, and you need to be careful with the home teams because the fans can make a big difference.”

And Capello pointed to Ireland as a team to avoid in the draw, with the 65-year-old admitting he does not want to face another Italian manager at the European championships.

“I spoke with Giovanni Trapattoni and [his assistant] Marco Tardelli after they got through,” he said. “They were both really happy. I think it’s a real success for Ireland and for this manager. It is a great thing.

“I hope we are not [drawn against them]. The countries are close and also it would be two Italian managers, so I’d prefer not to be drawn with them. It would be interesting, but I prefer not.

“We cannot draw Italy as we are in the same pot but this would be the same for me to face another Italian manager.”

Pot 1: Spain, Netherlands, Poland*, Ukraine*

Pot 2: Germany, Italy, England, Russia

Pot 3: Croatia, Greece, Portugal, Sweden

Pot 4: Denmark, France, Czech Republic, Republic of Ireland

* As joint hosts, Poland and Ukraine have already been allocated to Groups A and D respectively.

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