England's Lampard plays down reports of rift
RUSTENBURG, South Africa (Reuters) -- England did not hold clear-the-air crisis talks with manager Fabio Capello on Sunday evening, but instead had a routine meeting to review their performance, vice-captain Frank Lampard said on Monday.
"It was nothing like that, nothing like the way it has been reported back home," said midfielder Lampard, 31, who added that he was "baffled" by suggestions that a rebellious "gang of nine" players had plotted a mutiny to overhaul the team's shape and tactics.
Central defender John Terry, the former team captain, had told reporters on Sunday that he had expected there to be a frank exchange of views at the meeting.
"There is no point, if we feel we have problems, in keeping it in -- whether we have an argument with the manager, or it upsets him," Terry said. "It is us expressing our feelings -- and everyone needs to get it off their chests."
Lampard told reporters that the players were all disappointed following their dismal 0-0 draw with Algeria in their second Group C game in Cape Town last Friday -- but made clear he felt the only way to resolve matters was in training and matches.
He said that Terry, his Chelsea captain and teammate, had shown his passion on Sunday in calling for a no-holds-barred meeting with the manager, but had been to some degree misunderstood.
"That is John for you, he is a passionate man and a passionate player, but it was just an ordinary meeting. We have three or four of them each week to look at different things and, no, it was not heated at all."