Rio Ferdinand is the new skipper of the England football team

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London, Apr.26 : Manchester United and England defender Rio Ferdinand has been named the captain of the national squad and the club, following glowing support from both England coach Fabio Capello and Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

According to the Daily Mail, both feel the 29 million pound defender has the ability and character to lead the team.

Though Capello plans to try others in the job for friendlies against the USA on May 28 and Trinidad and Tobago four days later, the Italian has made it clear it will take something special from a rival to oust Ferdinand.

It is now almost certain he will lead out England for the first competitive match under Capello, the World Cup qualifier against Andorra on September 6.

Capello sees a new maturity in Ferdinand, which has seen him push ahead of Terry, Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard in the race to be England skipper.

Ferdinand has recently become a father, and with a second child on the way followed by marriage to Rebecca Ellison, his priorities look to have changed.

Ferguson agrees - and believes Ferdinand is a shoe-in to be the long-term captain of United once Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs retire. Fergie said: "His experience has added to his many abilities.

"He is one of the most natural footballers in England. For a defender, he is quick, mobile and technically gifted. His performance in Barcelona was superb."

ANI

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