How to Become Team Captain

Building the Soccer Players of Tomorrow.

How to Become Team Captain

July 31, 2017 Training 2

 Team Captain. What an honor to have.

Being the captain of a team is a sign of real leadership and a role that is sought out by all members of a team.

Being captain is a privilege that comes with responsibility.

You are trusted to be the influence and the driving force in the team’s side. You are the representation of your team and the person that takes the leadership task. That being said, everyone in your team should be a leader, and it shouldn’t be the captain always encouraging and setting the right example.

The captain’s armband is a merit that comes with a role to fulfill. Respect the honor and get on with the job of leading your team. 

My Experience with the Armband


I have had, fortunately, many occasions where I have been selected captain for my team. A total number of 3 times across all of my career so far. Many of them are due to my discipline off the field and my communication and encouragement when in game action. 


My Calgary football club, Foothills FC 02’s 


I was given the armband after 2 seasons with the club. I started playing offensive positions for them when finally reverting to a more defensive role. The need to communicate made me a defensive leader at the back. My discipline and encouragement towards others was key to be given the role.


Alberta South Provincial Team 2014-2015


My communication from the back and setting an example for others helped me gain the honor of being captain for my provincial team. My attitude and passion was always there and it showed on every occasion. One big factor was that I was so disciplined, and it was consistent throughout the program. I always put forth my best efforts, which shows a sense of dedication and focus. 

Alberta South Provincial Team 2015-2016

After the 2015-2016 season I got selected captain once again by different coaches than the previous year. It was a privilege considering I had been captain the previous year. I was again, very disciplined and vocal on the field. I was a very confident player and it reflected with my performances and my sense of security that I gave to the team. 

My experience with the armband was quite enjoyable and I learned and experienced many situations where I was called upon. 

Who is Usually a Captain?


Being a central defender, communication and giving your team a sense of security is a must and are common attributes of a captain. That’s why you see many captains being central defenders; because of their leadership and the role they play in protecting their team.

Nemanja Vidic,Former  Captain for Manchester United

Sergio Ramos, Thiago Silva, Puyol, Gary Cahill, John Terry and Nemanja Vidic are all examples of central defenders being captain.


However just because you play that position shouldn’t mean you should be more of a leader than the other positions in your team. Strikers, midfielders and goalkeepers are also captains, regardless of their role on the field. 


Many captains are also experienced players who know their way around the locker room and have an understanding of the philosophy of the club.


Other captains show that not all leadership is verbal by simply setting the correct example and following commands. A different type of leadership, but an effective one nonetheless.


No matter if you are experienced, or if your role requires you to be vocal, everyone has the responsibility to lead, set the example, and encourage others and own that leadership role.

Because then it wouldn’t be a team.

What It Takes to Be Captain


I’ve kindly narrowed it down to common traits I have followed and detected in present-day captains.


You need to be able to respect the staff and the players at all time. Discipline and integrity are really important here and you need to show you are a person with great values. You also need to have respect for yourself. Know your talent and have confidence in yourself. Your teammates and coach need to see a person with a sense of security and self-respect. Respect yourself, and people will start to respect you.


Own Situations

You need to step up and actually show leadership. Whether it’s leading the warm-up or being on time for team meetings you really need to own the situations you encounter. Show confidence when you play and play with effort, passion and really express your stamp of authority. Don’t go through the motions and let leadership opportunities slip. Own scenario’s and be there for your team.


Be Verbal

This is a huge one for me. Communicating is the best way to show direction for your team. Labeling yourself as a communicator is very important and often gives you a big boost for being captain. Really encourage and demand more from your teammates. After some negative moments pick them up and show support for them. Even simple communication like “man on!” or “turn” or “man on your back” can be effective and can put your team at an advantage.


Be Disciplined

You want to show your coach that you are 100% focused on your goals and that you have great dedication. This could mean taking care of your diet, individually training yourself, making sure you’re putting all your effort into training sessions, and preparing well for sessions. Being disciplined means you take your soccer development seriously, and shows dedication and commitment on your part.


Set the Example

What good does it do for your chances of being captain if you never follow orders nor take directions seriously? Your coach needs to see you always on point and always with attention in sessions. Setting the example helps you be a leader, and that person who is consistently demonstrating astute performance. Set the example and be the role model your team looks for so that you can eventually fulfill that role as captain.

Being Captain is a Privilege. Make Sure You Treat the Role with Dignity.

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2 Responses

  1. Nancy says:

    Being Captain might also mean lifting others before yourself. A leader is always at the service of others not the other way around. A Captain is an enabler of other peoples’ talents and successes.
    Leadership can be vocal as you well explained and it may also be humble and quiet, like you say, actions speak louder than words.

  2. roxana says:

    Hey Rodrigo i love this article specially when U quote respect first respect yourself so You can claim respect from others.
    I also will quote here Fareness as to have the ability to deal with situations with more fareness possible which at this football environments is not easy.
    Great congrats for being 3 times Captain! Roxana

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