'He is our star man' - Hart backs Rooney for England captaincy

Jonny Boyle

Joe Hart has backed Wayne Rooney to take the England captaincy for Friday's World Cup qualifier against San Marino, in the absence of Steven Gerrard.

With the Liverpool midfielder suspended, former captain John Terry retiring from international play, vice-captain Frank Lampard struggling to prove his fitness and Ashley Cole not being considered because of his recent Twitter outburst at the Football Association, manager Roy Hodgson is likely to be forced to pick a new skipper for the game. Despite being strongly backed to take the armband himself, Manchester City shot-stopper Hart believes Rooney is more qualified to take on the role.

"I've no idea who is going to be captain, but I am pretty sure it will fall to Rooney," Hart told Press Association Sport. "He is our star man with 10 million caps at the age of whatever he is, 26? I imagine he is a little bit further up the queue than me."

The Manchester United striker took the armband for the first time under former boss Fabio Capello, as Brazil beat England in Qatar three years ago.

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