London, Dec.15 : New England coach Fabio Capello's dad was a Italian war hero and a fan of the England football team.
Surviving the horrors of a Nazi concentration camp, Guerrino Capello instilled in his son the need to work hard, learn well and never to be afraid of anything.
But most of all, he taught his boy the importance, even in the toughest of circumstances, of being happy.
The former AC Milan boss's lawyer son, Pier Fillipo, met FA chiefs in London yesterday to tie up the final details of his dad's contract.
Fabio's sister Bianco Soprano, 66, said last night: "Dad would always say England was one of the best footballing nations in the world.
Bianco revealed that it had always been her brother's dream to one day clinch the England job and make his late father proud.
She said: "We had a big birthday party for Fabio's 60th last year. I remember him saying there was only one thing left for him to do in football - and that was to manage England. It was one of those dreams that you keep in the bottom drawer and now he has fulfilled it. If our father was alive today, there would be such an explosion of joy," The Sun quoted Bianco, as saying.
Guerrino, a teacher, died 15 years ago at the age of 67. The grit that he passed on to his son was learned the hard way during World War II.
Fabio, now 61, was not born when his Hungarian-born dad was called up to Italy's Royal Army.
Guerrino served in an artillery unit during the invasion of Yugoslavia by German and Italian forces in April 1941. When Italy pulled out of the war in 1943 he was among the soldiers rounded up by German forces. Nearly 60,000 Italian POWs died in Nazi concentration camps - and Guerrino was lucky to survive.
Fabio's mother Evelina, 86, said in the family's home village of Pieris: "My husband was a very big influence and taught Fabio a lot."
Soccer-mad Fabio joined his first club at the age of 14 - but followed his father's wishes to continue his studies. He became a qualified surveyor. (ANI)
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