Capello close to captain call

Italian coach narrows skipper choice to two

Fabio Capello has whittled down the short list to be England's next captain to two candidates.

Since replacing Steve McClaren as coach, Capello has rotated the armband during his four friendly matches in charge.

Steven Gerrard was skipper in the Italian's opening game against Switzerland in February before Rio Ferdinand led the team out in France.

John Terry, who had been captain during McClaren's reign, was given the job for last week's 2-0 victory over the United States at Wembley.

And former skipper David Beckham took on the role for Sunday's win in Trinidad & Tobago before passing the armband on to Gareth Barry.

Capello will make a decision on his permanent captain at the start of next season ahead of the 2010 World Cup qualifiers, which get underway against Andorra in September.

He is now considering two contenders for the coveted position and reiterated the qualities he expects to see from his skipper.

"The captain must be a leader and he must lead on the pitch and set an example on the pitch," said Capello.

"When he speaks, the players have to listen to him.

"I haven't decided who (will be captain), but I have two ideas. It is down to two. That is all I am saying."