"To see a sloppily dressed team irritates me," says the England coach Fabio Capello. "I believe in the dress code. It means we are all equal." Signor Capello is a big fan of matching suits and ties off the pitch in order to instil discipline. But he's also interested in what players wear on it. England's new kit - white shirt, white shorts - is hardly a departure from what came before but that does not mean no thought was put into it
"Myself and [general manager] Franco Baldini were involved in this project, aimed at revisiting the England kit traditions and heritage in a contemporary concept. "In practical terms we have provided an input for every detail of the kit, according to our professional experience and perceptions. The final produce, I believe, is excellent." The kit, made by Umbro, is the first which is tailored to fit each individual player, something which Capello thinks will make a big difference.
"I've been involved in kit design in every club I've managed, at Milan, Juventus, and Roma in particular," he says. "The quality of textile and other materials is of the utmost importance: it is fundamental for the body to perspire freely. "I recall that in the past there were training kits that made you feel as if you were wrapped in plastic." You suspect if Capello puts as much thought into his tactics and team selection then England's wait for a second World Cup could end next year.