Being captain was a dream

Steven Gerrard says being England captain was a “dream” and he was proud every time he wore the armband.

The Liverpool midfielder announced his retirement from international football on Monday after 114 appearances – 38 in which he led his country out.  

Having played alongside some other “unbelievable” England captains, he insists the responsibility and importance of the role should never be underestimated.

“It’s a dream every time you put the armband on. It’s a special feeling.”

Steven Gerrard 

“It’s a dream every time you put the armband on and you lead that group of players out to try and win a game for your country – it’s a special feeling,” Gerrard told TheFA.com. 

“The England captaincy should never be disrespected or underestimated. 

“I lost out on the captaincy of a couple of occasions with previous managers, which at the time was a disappointment, but I was very respectful of the captains who went before me; David Beckham, John Terry, Rio Ferdinand – unbelievable captains.” 

Gerrard first captained the Three Lions in 2004 and followed that on a handful of other occasions, including at the World Cup in 2010.

Then, two years ago, shortly after Roy Hodgson’s arrival, he was named as permanent England captain and says he will always be there to give advice to any of his successors.  

Watch our full interview with Steven Gerrard

“I worked really hard for it,” said Gerrard. 

“The day I got [the captaincy] I said to myself ‘every time you put it on, give it your best. It may not always work out the way you want it to, but always show respect to the armband, be dignified, be humble and give your best’. 

“That’s the way I tried to go about it, I’m very proud to say I captained my country, and I’m here for any England managers who want advice on the next England captain.

“I’m sure Roy will give it to the right person and I hope they show it the same respect that I have.”