FIFA World Cup 2018: How England captains have performed at the World Cups

Written By: Aveek Chakraborty
FIFA World Cup 2018: How England captains have performed at the World Cups

Bengaluru, June 12: England have been at the World Cup stage for 15 times, including this year, and have seen 11 men captaining the Three Lions side previously.

World Cup fixtures | Groups

This year the mantle of captaincy has been handed to Tottenham Hotspur's star Harry Kane, who will be the 12th person to lead the side in their dream for World Cup glory.

From Bill Wright, Bobby Moore to Beckham to Gerard, England have sent some of the biggest names of English football to captain the side at the world's biggest footballing stage.

Here we look into all the previous English captains' achievements at the World Cup:

Billy Wright: 1950, 1954 & 1958

Billy Wright: 1950, 1954 & 1958

Wolverhampton Wanderers legend Billy Wright was the first Englishman and only Three Lions captain to represent England three times as a captain at the biggest stage. The defender was also the first player ever to reach 100 caps in a national team. However, the defender at the World Cup only managed to gain two wins over all three editions in Brazil, Switzerland and Sweden and reaching the quarterfinal was the farthest he could go in the competition.

Image Courtesy:shropshirestar.com

Johnny Haynes: 1962

Johnny Haynes: 1962

The English forward was a profound goal scorer for his club Fulham FC and the national team. He was given the responsibility to lead his team at the World Cup in 1962. However, the forward could not open his account at the biggest stage and his team only advanced to quarter-finals before losing against eventual winners Brazil.

Image Courtesy: Fulham FC

Bobby Moore: 1966 & 1970

Bobby Moore: 1966 & 1970

Arguably the English football's most significant captain, Sir Bobby Moore is still the only man to captain a World Cup-winning England team.

Moore skippered his country on 90 occasions - taking in 108 appearances in all and delivered the only major trophy, the 1966 Jules Rimet trophy in his home soil. But in 1970 he only managed to guide them till Quarters.

Image Courtesy: Football Purists

Mick Mills: 1982

Mick Mills: 1982

The English fullback was handed the vital role of the English team at World Cup. However, the defender only played eight matches as skipper five of which came at the 1982 event. He guided his team to the second group stage unbeaten, however, England bowed out from there.

Image Courtesy:Alchetron.com

Bryan Robson and Peter Shilton: 1986 & 1990

Bryan Robson and Peter Shilton: 1986 & 1990

In pic: Bryan Robson

Captain Marvel, Manchester United's all-time greatest hero Robson was the captain of English national teams for consecutive two events. The famous English defender was arguably one of the players in both the editions, however, injuries during both campaigns halted his journey and he only managed a handful of games in total.

In his place, renowned goalkeeper Peter Shilton was given the charge on an interim basis in both occasions. But the legendary keeper who made over 125 appearances for Three Lions could only lead his team to quarter-final spot in 1986 and lost in the semi-final in 1990.

In the last two decades, till date, this is the major advancement England have made so far.

Image Courtesy: SkySports

Alan Shearer: 1998

Alan Shearer: 1998

English Premier League's all-time top scorer Alan Shearer was handed the armband by manager Glenn Hoddle for the 1998 World Cup qualification campaign which also continued till the final stages.

The star-studded team which had the likes of young guns in Michael Owen, David Beckham, etc., however, bowed out of the round 16 after losing tie-breaker against Argentina.

Infamously, the game is still remembered because of the shameful red card of David Beckham.

Image Courtesy:Sports Mole

David Beckham: 2002 & 2006

David Beckham: 2002 & 2006

England's one of the finest skippers of all-time, former Real Madrid and Manchester United winger David Beckham almost single-handedly led his team to 2002 World cup final stage after scoring a dying minute freekick against Greece.

However, their journey only came to an end in the quarter-final at the hands of eventual winner Brazil.

He also skippered England in 2006, the team which is believed to be the golden generation of English football with the likes of Lampard, Scholes, Gerrard, Ferdinand etc. but once again penalties and red cards proved to be their undoing.

Rooney was sent-off for a challenge on Ronaldo and the team lost in the tie-breaker against Portugal in the quarter-final.

Steven Gerrard (centre): 2010 & 2014

Steven Gerrard (centre): 2010 & 2014

After Beckham's tenure, Fabio Capello and Roy Hodgson both handed the role to Liverpool talisman Steven Gerrard. But on both the occasions, as usual, England failed to earn a bright spot.

Capello's tenure in the World Cup ended in defeat in the round of 16, whereas, Hodgson's campaign was the worst in the last 56 years when England failed to get past the group stage.

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    Story first published: Tuesday, June 12, 2018, 15:16 [IST]
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