Goalkeeper James was critical of former England manager McClaren
David James says confidence is growing under England coach Fabio Capello.
Capello's squad earned a third straight win of the 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign by defeating Kazakhstan 5-1.
England keeper James, 38, believes Capello must be praised for making the right decisions under pressure because past coaching errors have been costly.
"We have the confidence that what he is saying is right," said James. "We have had situations before where managerial decisions have cost us."
Capello has shown he is prepared to make difficult decisions.
He picked teenager Theo Walcott to face Croatia in September and replaced Gareth Barry with Shaun Wright-Phillips at the interval against Kazakhstan on Saturday following a goalless first half, while pushing Wayne Rooney from a position on the left into a more forward role.
Portsmouth goalkeeper James added: "Mr Capello is stubborn enough, in the nicest way, to put his point of view across to everyone in the side - and then you basically do what he wants to do.
"He doesn't mind saying what he feels and it is difficult to argue with him.
"If you look at the current squad, the nucleus of it has been the same for the past three England managers.
"If you look at the situation, managerial decisions are effectively the difference.
"It now seems a good bunch of players. The same players are playing a different game and performing."
James was openly critical of previous manager Steve McClaren's decision to give Scott Carson his competitive debut in the crucial qualifying match against Croatia last year.
England eventually lost that game - in which Carson made a costly error - and failed to qualify for Euro 2008, with McClaren losing his job soon afterwards.
I can't imagine Belarus are going to come out firing and we just have to be focused and patient
Speaking to The Observer newspaper in November 2007, James stated: "Scotty is a great keeper and will undoubtedly become England's number one in the future but he didn't need to be put in that position, he should never have reached the Croatia game so poorly equipped in terms of experience.
"Time and again different goalkeepers were brought into the squad.
"But until the Austria game, and other than Paul Robinson, only Ben Foster - in the friendly against Spain - started a match.
"In the meantime the number two goalkeeper sitting on the bench rotated between five of us. It's ludicrous."
James also praised Capello's decision to announce the starting line-up to the squad only a couple of hours before kick-off, claiming it has made the players more competitive, while also generating an air of nervous excitement in the build-up to games.
Veteran James is expected to be named in Capello's side to face Belarus on Wednesday, a game the keeper expects to be similar to Saturday's challenge against Kazakhstan.
"I can't imagine Belarus are going to come out firing and we just have to be focused and patient again, if necessary," he added.
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