Steven Gerrard has retired from international football.
After his mistake (harsh, but it did come off his head) cost England dearly against Uruaguay, more people than not would probably want him to go.
We could discuss until the cows come home whether Gerrard was even that good. In premier league terms, he was (and remains) up there, at international level he's not going to mentioned with the greats.
He might not have been England's answer to Pirlo in Brazil, but he can look back on 114 caps with relative fondness, despite not having an international final, or even semi-final, on his CV.
Picking a new captain is a slighlty trickier affair. It's a position that England, above all other international sides, lift to idol worship. The England captain should be all things to all men, the embodiment of the three lions, the face that strikes fear into the opposition.
The problem is that there aren't really any stand out candidates, there's a derth of experienced middle aged (in footballing terms) players in the squad. Popular concensus is that Rooney, Hart and Cahill are the three in contention to lead England through the next qualifying campaign. Hardly sets your heart a flutter does it.
Rooney has flattered and faltered on the big stage. He may be World Class in terms of marketting opportunities for the FA and Manchester Utd, but he doesn't appear to strike fear into international class defenders and they seem to get him in their pocket more often than not.
Gary Cahill is a solid if not spectacular defender. But that just reminds us of the golden age of centre backs England has enjoyed over the last 20 years. Even at the 2010 World Cup England could call on Terry, Ferdinand, Carragher, King (for a few minutes anyway).......and Upson......holy shit(!) Stephen Warnock made that squad as well!!
Maybe the 2006 vintage of Terry, Ferdinand, Carragher and Campbell suits the example better. Regardless, you'll know what I mean if you're a certain age, you'll remember central defenders were never an issue, as England had bloody good ones.
Finally theres Joe Hart. A keeper dropped by his club last season for dropping so many clangers. An able shot stopper, he doesn't seem to have the charisma to lead the team, especially given how hard it is to do from the position of goalkeeper (not to mention it being one of the most solitary positions in a team sport).
Of course we could just do what most sensible countries do, and give the captaincy to whoever has the most caps.
That would make the new England Captain............................Wayne Rooney.
Sven-Göran Eriksson (that's right, he's still offering his opinion on England from the comfort of Chinese Super League club Guangzhou R&F) thinks it should be Rooney. But let's not forget, we're talking about a piece of cloth and some extra marketting potential. I like to think if you've got something to say to the team in the dressing room, you'd say it.................whether you were wearing an armband on or not.