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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Aug 19, 2008

Capello prepares to name new England skipper

Fabio Capello will make his first major mark on the England team today - with Joe Cole confirming the Italian's vast CV commands instant respect in the dressing room.

After taking four games to get a feel for the job, Capello's work will begin in earnest when he names his captain for tomorrow's friendly with the Czech Republic.

Although Steven Gerrard and David Beckham have been given the role previously by Capello, the choice for the full-time skipper appears to be between John Terry, who was originally handed the armband by Steve McClaren, and Rio Ferdinand.

Both have impressed in their own way; Terry in the brave manner he led from the front against USA in May, scoring a goal to ease the pain of his Champions League heartbreak, and Ferdinand as recently as yesterday when he spoke passionately about the need to tackle knife-crime.

As a loyal foot soldier, Cole would be happy with either man.

And as Capello is making the decision, he is sure it will be correct.

'If Fabio Capello tells you something, you do it,' said Cole. 'There are a lot of good English managers around but at the moment there isn't one who has been there and done it.

'The lads are behind him because of his reputation. You realise his pedigree and what he has done in the game. He doesn't have to prove anything because he is a winner.'

Ferdinand is favoured to get the decision, although if Cole's theory is to be believed, the Manchester United man's leadership qualities will only be required when England are in trouble.

'You need a captain more in the bad times than the good,' he observed. 'That is when you need someone who steps forward and takes responsibility.'

While Terry has combined captaincy with Chelsea and England, Ferdinand is amazingly only third choice at Old Trafford.

Indeed, should Gary Neville eventually find his way back into the international fold and Ferdinand land the England job, the former West Ham star would find himself in control of the man he plays under with the Red Devils.

Not that Cole is willing to make a choice. He is just content that both men, plus Gerrard, Beckham and Aston Villa's Gareth Barry for that matter, are up to the job.

'We have got so many leaders in the squad now,' he said. 'I am sure whoever takes the armband there will still be another five or six leaders taking us forward on the pitch.

'JT and Rio are both well respected by the team. They are top internationals at the peak of their game, experienced and vocal in the dressing room. They both lead by example - they both have all the attributes you need. But so do many others as well.'

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