It would be hard to imagine any other player than John Terry as Chelsea captain these days but as he is in and out of the team these days it might be a good idea to start thinking who will lead the Blues in the long run.
Both Frank Lampard (vice captain) and Petr Cech will usually stake a claim on the armband when Terry is absent from the starting line-up but the former isn’t a natural leader and it is difficult to marshal anything but the defence when you’re skippering the team from the goal-line.
Before Terry was officially named captain by Jose Mourinho, he was playing as a natural successor to Marcel Desailly and was accustomed to leading his side before the Portuguese manager had arrived, could we see something similar again?
David Luiz is currently first choice in the Blues’ defence and although I (amongst others) have been heavily critical of his erratic style of defending, he definitely does have the personality to carry the responsibility of the armband and whether you love or loathe him he seems to take a great deal of pride when pulling on the shirt.
The Brazilian has been the most improved player since Rafael Benitez arrived at Stamford Bridge and has a case of being the most improved overall this season. Benitez has helped show that with the right coaching Luiz can make it as a great centre-half or central midfielder, with the right manager he could potentially be a great captain?
It’s still too soon to tell but there’s only one way to find out and those that work with him regularly will know if he’s up for the job or not. I’d like to think it would help level him out a bit more as he is still prone to the odd scary moment and sometimes suffers with a bit of over-confidence in the wrong areas.
The 25-year-old is becoming more and more outspoken, announcing himself as one of the leading voices in the dressing room and Terry, who knows a few things about what makes a good captain, believes Luiz is captain material when he was asked recently:
“I think so. He pushes the lads. He is like that in training, demanding a lot from himself and the other players.
“You look at David and he has done incredibly well this year. The Fulham game just shows what ability he has. Not just the goal but five minutes after that he stepped into midfield and put Fernando [Torres] through with his left foot with a 40-yard ball. He is still learning, still young but will be a very good player.”
Now, I don’t think Terry is going anywhere at least until the end of next season but he could play a vital role in helping his successor develop as a leader.