On Sunday night at the European Championships the captains of both the Spanish and Italian team were goalkeepers; to me it doesn’t make sense to make a goalkeeper a captain.
The goalkeeper has the best view on the pitch and I think an important part of his job is to shout at his teammates to tell them where to go.
In theory the goalkeeper is the captain of the defence but he doesn’t really have a say what happens in midfield or going forward.
In an ideal world every team would have eleven leaders on the field; it’s just a shame we don’t live in an ideal world.
I think defenders should all be leaders. They have to be loud and confident to tell their teammates to cover or move out etc. Nemanja Vidic is a captain at United who leads by example, and is top class in his position.
Just like a goalkeeper I don’t think forwards are ideal captains either. The job they have to do is score goals and with that comes a lot of pressure; add the captaincy to that and some players will buckle. They can often slip out of form, and if they do and need to be dropped, the team loses the captain with it.
For me the best captains are midfielders and the box to box ones are special.
When I was growing up I remember seeing the great Bryan Robson, when he wasn’t injured, showing what a captain is all about. The former Manchester United Captain would tell his teammates what to do and was the first into battle.
The saying is; a good leader leads from the front, and there is little doubt ‘Captain Marvel’ did that. He brought the same to the national team.
Steven Gerrard, the Liverpool captain is very similar. He covers every blade of grass at least twice in a game and gives it his all; this is why he is so loved at Anfield.
I think he also brings that to the England squad; fighting for every ball and leading from the front, and he did himself proud at Euro 2012.
I hope Mark Hughes chooses a good captain for my team this season; with respect to Joey Barton he is not captain material at all.
You need a cool head and be a good listener to be a good captain; not every footballer has that and this is what makes the real ones stand out.
What makes a good captain for you? Can a goalkeeper be an effective captain?
image: © Ben Sutherland