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Is Roy Hodgson right in selecting Steven Gerrard as Three Lions captain?

Steven Gerrard possesses a wealth of experience in wearing the arm band for both club and country.

As skipper of Liverpool the talismanic midfielder has helped the club win the Carling Cup, the FA Cup and the Champions League.

Gerrard’s role as captain for England has seen him take the reins in South Africa for the 2010 World Cup.

Following the FA’s decision to take captaincy away from John Terry and Rio Ferdinand’s absence from the squad, new England manager Roy Hodgson has chosen Gerrard to captain the Three Lions at Euro 2012.

Is this the right decision? And who else was in the running?

Let’s start off with the big one, John Terry

No one could question JT’s ability as a player and a captain. He has undoubtedly shown a return to good form towards the end of the season at Chelsea.

Kneeing Pedro in the Champions League semi final cannot be ignored though.

Letting your team, manager, and fans down like that is not something you want attributed to the country’s captain.

There is also of course the pending court case over allegations of racism, which is the reason for Terry’s loss of the arm band in February.

If Hodgson wanted the support of the FA he could never have picked the Chelsea captain to lead the team this summer.

Why Frank Lampard?

Lamps has recently captained Chelsea in the Champions League Final; a game in which the Blues beat Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena to become the first London based Champions of Europe.

The midfielder also has experience in leading the international team and was captain when England beat Spain 1-0 last year.

However, we know now that with every major international tournament there we will once again open up the debate over Gerrard and Lampard playing together.

If Hodgson has decided that they cannot, then his decision to pick Gerrard as captain may provide some insight as to who he would prefer in midfield.

With Scott Parker having another incredible season he poses a strong threat to Lampard’s first team place and you can’t have your captain sitting on the bench.

How about Scott Parker?

We must all remember the reports of the then West Ham midfielder bringing the changing room close to tears with his inspirational half-time speech in February 2011. It worked, as the Hammers fought back from 3-0 down to draw 3-3 against West Brom.

Since his move to Tottenham Hotspur last Summer Parker has been handed the responsibility as captain on more than one occasion and performed superbly as an integral part of the team.

The 31-year-old midfielder was rewarded on an international level when he was selected by Stuart Pearce to captain England against the Netherlands.

Despite his lack of experience in the role for his country many England fans would be more than happy to see Parker captain the side in England and Ukraine due to his sheer determination and reliability.

It is sadly his injuries that may have cost him this role at the European Championships. If Parker had been fully fit at the end of the season then it may well have been a very close call between himself and Gerrard.

Surely Joe Hart should have been in contention?

The Manchester City goalkeeper has had a phenomenal season between the sticks and played a strong part in their title winning campaign.

Hart is a vocal, confident and highly skilled goalkeeper who was being tipped by many to take the arm band this summer.

He may not have the experience as a captain at international level but many would back him to lead the team from the goal line at Euro 2012.

Making Hart captain could have been the start of a “new” England under Hodgson but for the moment this is not to be.

It is looking like the 25-year-old will have a long England career ahead of him and may eventually take up the arm band providing he doesn’t indulge in any Robert Green or David Seamen style antics.

How about Wanye Rooney?

The striker gives it his all for club and country. Rooney will do all he can to regain possession for his time and will then be pivotal in the attacking move.

However, it is this fiery nature that has let Wayne Rooney down on more than one occasion in a struggle to keep the balance between competitive aggression and stupid actions.

Who could forget the stamp on Ricardo Carvalho in the 2006 World Cup quarter-final?

With Rooney already missing the first two games of the tournament due to an unnecessary sending off against Montenegro it would have been too big a risk to pick the 26-year-old as captain.

Not only would the striker be absent for the games against France and Sweden but Hodgson could not gamble with a captain displaying that sort of hot headedness.

In Gerrard we trust

Hodgson has gone with experience and dependability in choosing Steven Gerrard to lead the team out against France on June 11.

We know Gerrard to be a strong and reliant leader in a Liverpool shirt but he has yet fully to apply this sort of leadership to the England set up.

Fabio Capello in fact said that giving Gerrard the captaincy takes something away from his game and this could certainly be said of his performance on Saturday against Norway.

We can only trust in Gerrard to bring his club performance as a captain to the table and lead England to the quarter-finals at the very least.

By Chris Flynn

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