Captain (association football)

The team captain of an association football team, sometimes known as the skipper,[1] is a team member chosen to be the on-pitch leader of the team: it is often one of the older/or more experienced members of the squad, or a player that can heavily influence a game or have good leadership qualities. The team captain is usually identified by the wearing of an armband.[2]

A captain's armband with FIFA's "My Game is Fair Play" slogan printed on it.


England Women's Vs USA (18500761141)
United States captain Abby Wambach and England captain Steph Houghton shake hands before kick off, 2015

The only official responsibility of a captain specified by the Laws of the Game is to participate in the coin toss prior to kick-off[3] (for choice of ends) and prior to a penalty shootout. Contrary to what is sometimes said, captains have no special authority under the Laws to challenge a decision by the referee.[4] However, referees may talk to the captain of a side about the side's general behaviour when necessary.[5]

At an award-giving ceremony after a fixture like a cup competition final, the captain usually leads the team up to collect their medals. Any trophy won by a team will be received by the captain who will also be the first one to hoist it. The captain also generally leads the teams out of the dressing room at the start of the match. A captain is also tasked with running the dressing room.

The captain generally provides a rallying point for the team: if morale is low, it is the captain who will be looked upon to boost their team's spirits.[6]

Captains may join the manager in deciding the starting eleven for a certain game. In youth or recreational football, the captain often takes on duties, that would, at a higher level, be delegated to the manager.


A club captain is usually appointed for a season. If he is unavailable or not selected for a particular game, or must leave the pitch, then the club vice-captain will assume similar duties.

The match captain is the first player to lift a trophy should the team win one, even if he was not the club captain. A good example of this was in the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final when match captain Peter Schmeichel lifted the trophy for Manchester United as club captain Roy Keane was suspended. In the 2012 UEFA Champions League Final, match captain (who was the vice-captain) Frank Lampard jointly lifted the trophy for Chelsea with club captain John Terry (who was suspended, but given permission by UEFA).[7]

A club may appoint two distinct roles: a club captain to represent the players in a public relations role, and correspondent on the pitch. Manchester United has had both of these types of captains; Roy Keane was the club captain on and off the pitch from 1997 to 2005 as he was a regular in the starting eleven, but his successor Gary Neville while nominally club captain from 2005 to 2010 had made few first team appearances due to injuries and in his absence other players (Rio Ferdinand or vice-captain Ryan Giggs) were chosen to captain the team on the field, such as in the 2008 (Ferdinand was captain as he was in the starting eleven, while Giggs was a substitute) and 2009 UEFA Champions League Finals, respectively. After Neville retired in 2011, regular starter Nemanja Vidić was named as club captain.

São Paulo's Rogério Ceni is the player who has worn the captain's armband the most times (980 times, from 1999 to 2015, all playing for São Paulo).


A vice-captain (or assistant captain) is a player that is expected to captain the side when the club's captain is not included in the starting eleven, or if, during a game, the captain is substituted or sent off. Examples include Thomas Müller at Bayern Munich, Marcelo at Real Madrid, César Azpilicueta at Chelsea, Sergio Busquets at Barcelona, Harry Kane at Tottenham Hotspur, James Milner at Liverpool and Ashley Young at Manchester United.

Similarly, some clubs also name a 3rd captain or even a 4th captain to take the role of captain when both the captain and vice-captain are unavailable.[8][9][10]


Cristiano Ronaldo (left) and Lionel Messi (right), wearing the captain's armband while playing for Portugal and Argentina respectively.

Cristiano Ronaldo - Dagur Brynjólfsson
Suisse vs Argentine - Granit Xhaka & Lionel Messi - b

In the 1986 FIFA World Cup, when Bryan Robson was injured and vice-captain Ray Wilkins received a two-game suspension for a red card, Peter Shilton became England's captain for the rest of the tournament.

During the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa, Germany had three captains. Michael Ballack had captained the national team since 2004, including the successful qualifiers for the 2010 World Cup, but he did not play in the latter tournament due to a last minute injury. Philipp Lahm was appointed captain in South Africa, but due to an illness that ruled him out of Germany's final fixture, Bastian Schweinsteiger captained the team for that game which was the third-place match. Lahm stated in an interview that he would not relinquish the captaincy when Ballack returned, causing some controversy, so team manager Oliver Bierhoff clarified the situation saying "Philipp Lahm is the World Cup captain and Michael Ballack is still the captain".[11][12] Lahm ended up becoming the permanent captain of Germany until his retirement, as Ballack was never called up to the national team again.[13][14]

See also


  1. ^ Phillips, James (2 July 2018). "Brazil captains: The 16 players who Tite has made skipper of the World Cup favourites". Daily Star. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  2. ^ "Captain". Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  3. ^ "About Football Glossary"
  4. ^ Association, The Football. "The website for the English football association, the Emirates FA Cup and the England football team". Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  5. ^ Association, The Football. "The website for the English football association, the Emirates FA Cup and the England football team". Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  6. ^ Keelby United - The Role of the Captain Archived 9 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Champions League Final 2012: Keane to see John Terry lift cup". 19 May 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  8. ^ "Smalling made Man United's third captain". Retrieved 7 September 2018.
  9. ^ Abayomi, Tosin. "Gernot Rohr wants Super Eagles to perform without Mikel". Retrieved 7 September 2018.
  10. ^ Shaw, Chris (26 October 2018). "Klopp explains players' vote for captaincy roles". Liverpool F.C. Retrieved 26 October 2018.
  11. ^ "A Power Struggle on the German National Team?". Spiegel Online. 6 July 2010. Retrieved 17 February 2012.
  12. ^ "The Team Is 'Winning Hearts Beyond Germany's Borders'". Spiegel Online. 5 July 2010. Retrieved 17 February 2012.
  13. ^ "Lahm filling captain's role for Germany in word and deed". Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  14. ^ "Perennial chokers Germany must beat themselves before Italy -". 27 June 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
1942 Coupe de France Final

The 1942 Coupe de France Final was a football match held at Stade Olympique Yves-du-Manoir, Colombes on May 17, 1942, that saw Red Star Olympique defeat FC Sète 2–0 thanks to goals by Henri Joncourt at 45 minutes, and Alfred Aston at 72 minutes.

2018 AFF U-19 Youth Championship squads

The 2018 AFF U-19 Youth Championship was an international football tournament that was held in Indonesia from 1 July to 14 July. The 11 national teams involved in the tournament were required to register a squad of 23 players; only players in these squads are eligible to take part in the tournament.

C.D. Dragón

Club Deportivo Dragón is a Salvadoran football club, based in San Miguel, El Salvador; founded in 1939. Dragón has won the league title twice in the 1951 and 1953 and finished as runner-up on three occasions.CD Dragón have played their home games at the 10,000 capacity Estadio Juan Francisco Barraza since 1956 when the stadium was built.Their traditional home kit consists of Green and White shirts (striped) with white shorts and green socks.

The club has a long-standing rivalry with national opponents Águila, and matches between the two sides are known as the "Derby Migueleño".

Captain (sports)

In team sport, captain is a title given to a member of the team. The title is frequently honorary, but in some cases the captain may have significant responsibility for strategy and teamwork while the game is in progress on the field. In either case, it is a position that indicates honor and respect from one's teammates – recognition as a leader by one's peers. In association football and cricket, a captain is also known as a skipper.

Depending on the sport, team captains may be given the responsibility of interacting with game officials regarding application and interpretation of the rules. In many team sports, the captains represent their respective teams when the match official does the coin toss at the beginning of the game.

Various sports have differing roles and responsibilities for team captains.

Some of the greatest captains in history are the ones with the most subtle of traits that are required for success. From Sam Walker in his book "The Captain Class" he states that a captain is "the most important factor for a team's success".

Football captains

Football captains may refer to:

Captain (association football), a team captain of an association football team

National Football League team captains, a team captain in a National Football League team

List of positions of authority

The following is a list of positions of authority.

Seesan Selvan

Seesan Selvan (born 28 October 1993 in Kerala) is an Indian footballer who currently plays for Kerala State Football Team.He was instrumental in Kerala winning the 2017-18 Santosh Trophyand he is the current Captain of the team...


Vice-captain, alternate captain (ice hockey) or vice-skip (curling) may refer to a role in a number of sports immediately below the role of captain. The vice-captain may have a number of different roles, including substituting as captain when the regular captain is injured or unavailable, or becoming the new captain if the original captain can't actually be the captain anymore. In some instances, vice-captain can be a similar role to a co-captain, in which there are at least two people who equally share the responsibilities of being the vice-captain. For more information on the role in particular sports, see:

Vice-captain (association football)

Captain (Australian rules football)

Captain (cricket)

Captain (ice hockey)

Vice (curling)

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