Debate continues over who will step up as the new Cobblers captain for next season and with so many big characters in the squad it’s tough to separate some of the names in line for the position. A captain is generally someone who is a good talker on and off the pitch, someone who is, barring injury or suspension, a regular first team player and someone who can grab their team by the neck and pull them through difficult times and et examples for the rest of them to follow.
So who fits the bill? Who would be your choice if you were Gary Johnson? Here’s a few of the candidates based on my opinions alone…
Andy Holt: Promoted to Player/Coach, Holty was a real presence on the pitch last season with whole hearted displays and a never say die attitude. An obvious choice if he was to be in the team all season round but I feel that the coaching role will be the position he fills more in the coming months unless we have major injury problems. That would mean that he’s less a favourite than he would have been twelve months ago.
John Johnson: All the qualities explained above are evident in JJ and I’ve always preferred a captain to be in the middle of the game rather than at either end, i.e. goalkeeper or striker. Johnson, like Holt, puts everything into every tackle and appears to be an excellent talker so he fits the bill perfectly.
Byron Webster: At 6’7 you would immediately think of Webster as a prime candidate and particularly with his centre back position and the fact that he’s likely to be one of the first names on the team sheet. The only sticking point would be his talking and ability to rouse a squad in tough times. Gary Johnson has already been telling Webster to talk more and for a big lad he should be taking charge of the back four at least. If he gets this down then he stands a real chance.
Paul Turnbull: Named Stockport County captain at the age of just 21 last summer, the new signing has a great chance of progressing to Cobblers captain. Something must have been seen in him by the powers that be at Edgeley Park and I wouldn’t be surprised to see an immediate appointment here as well.
Bayo Akinfenwa: The big man is a cult figure here from his previous spell and would be the choice based on the relationship with the fans and the rest of the squad. The undoubted connection that Bayo has with the club would help his cause but as mentioned above I do worry about front men being captain because of their inability to see a big picture of the game that sometimes you can see better from the middle of the pitch.
So that’s my five and the best candidate in my eyes is John Johnson. Having been at the club for a couple of years now he’s build up an affinity with the supporters, has a voice on the pitch and can set examples with tough tackling and 100% commitment. It remains to be seen who namesake Gary will choose but that’s my two cents. Yours are very welcome as well of course!