John Terry was stripped of the England captaincy by coach Fabio Capello following a media storm over his private life, and will be replaced by Rio Ferdinand.
Capello told Terry of the decision in a brief meeting at Wembley Stadium, a week after the married Chelsea defender lost a High Court battle to ban publication of details of an alleged relationship with England teammate Wayne Bridge’s former girlfriend.
“After much thought, I have made the decision that it will be best for me to take the captaincy away from John Terry,” Capello said in a statement. “As a captain with the team, John Terry has displayed extremely positive behaviour.
“However, I have to take into account other considerations and what is best for all of the England squad. What is best for all of the England team has inspired my choice.”
The Football Association said vice-captain Rio Ferdinand would assume the captaincy. Ferdinand was overlooked for the job after Capello took charge in 2008, but the 31-year-old centre back has struggled for match action for Manchester United this season due to ongoing injury problems.
“When I chose John Terry as captain, I also selected a vice-captain and also named a third choice. There is no reason to change this decision,” Capello said. “I would like to take this opportunity to thank the FA, particularly Lord David Triesman and Ian Watmore for allowing me to make this decision in my own time and in the best interest of the team.”