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Official: John Terry stripped of England captaincy

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Two days before Manchester United travel to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea, John Terry, captain of Chelsea has been stripped of the England captaincy.

Yesterday, FA Chairman David Bernstein spoke to all of the board members, and today, Terry is understood to have been phoned by the chairman to inform him of their decision. Here is a portion of the FA's statement, which can be read in full at the click of the link

Following the decision to adjourn the court case against John Terry to July, The Football Association confirm he will not captain the England team until the allegations against him are resolved.

The FA Board expected the trial to be concluded prior to the European Championship. Further to Wednesday’s confirmation that the trial will not take place until after the tournament, the Board has discussed the matter in detail and has collectively decided it is in the interests of all parties that John has the responsibilities of captaincy removed at this time.

This decision has been taken due to the higher profile nature of the England captaincy, on and off the pitch, and the additional demands and requirements expected of the captain leading into and during a tournament.

Terry has pleaded not guilty to his charge of racially abusing Anton Ferdinand. Now, regular readers will know my thoughts on this. However now I am going to play devils advocate. Lets look at the flip side

Terry still hasn't been proved guilty. Not by a court of law, or by the FA who will undertake their own disciplinary hearings after the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service) have ruled on the case. So by stripping him of the captaincy, the FA are.....condemning the man because of something he is, at this time, only alleged to have done.

This in part has been brought on because Chelsea asked the judge residing over the case to delay the hearing to July the 9th. After the Premier League season and after the Euro's. It has forced the FA's hand.

The statement states that Fabio Capello will be allowed to include Terry in the upcoming friendly against Holland.

The last time Terry was stripped, the Captaincy fell to United's Rio Ferdinand, the brother of Anton. Yet recently he has struggled to maintain his place, with a loss of form and loss of fitness cited as reasons.

Taking this back to United's game with Chelsea on Sunday, how do you think this will affect Terry's performance? He is a strong minded player, and I think it is set up for him to put in a big performance. As a screw you to the bigwigs at the FA. And who do you think the England Captaincy should fall to? Rio? Frank Lampard? Scott Parker would be my shout.

Update: Rio hs tweeted that he does not want the national team armband