Fabio Capello has urged supporters not to expect too much from hat-trick hero Theo Walcott.
England coach eases expectation on youngster's shoulders
England manager Fabio Capello has urged supporters not to expect too much from Theo Walcott in light of his excellent performance in Zagreb.
The teenager was in impressive form in his second consecutive start for England as he netted a hat-trick in Wednesday evening's 4-1 World Cup qualifying success over Croatia.
Capello stood by Walcott despite the experienced David Beckham pushing for a recall to the starting XI, and the Italian has praised the Arsenal forward's impact.
However, he was keen to highlight 19-year-old Walcott's age, and stressed that it would be foolish to get too carried away with his display against the Croats.
Capello said: "I decided to put Theo into the first XI because I saw the game against Andorra at the weekend and also how he was in training - and at this moment he is fantastic psychologically and physically.
"It is very dangerous for defenders against Walcott. At this moment, he is difficult to contain.
"Of course, he is a young player and I said after the Andorra game that he will play fantastic games - but also that he will not play the same level in all of the games.
"When he plays like against Croatia, it is fantastic, but when he plays not so good, we have to support him. This is very important."
Walcott also revealed how LA Galaxy midfielder Beckham instilled him with extra confidence for the tie at the Maksimir Stadium.
"Becks told me to be a bit more greedy in the box, then afterwards he said I was probably too greedy!" Walcott said.
"He has been absolutely brilliant to me and he just gave me so much confidence. He's given me praise and it's unbelievable coming from David.
"I watched him when I was younger. To train with him, to be around him, to talk to him just spurs me on and gives me a big lift."
Croatia boss Slaven Bilic, meanwhile, reserved praise for Walcott, describing the youngster as 'lightening quick' and a 'great finisher'.
"He scored two goals from not so easy positions, he just hit the corner," said Bilic. "And it is hard to mark him. That is why he is an England international and why he is at Arsenal."