According to a report in today's Guardian, Wales manager Gary Speed has named Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey as captain for Saturday's Euro 2012 qualifier against England. Ramsey has not played for Wales since late 2009 due to his broken leg, but that did not stop Speed from looking towards the future after Craig Bellamy bowed out of consideration:
"Aaron Ramsey will be captain. I thought about it a lot. As I have mentioned before, it is about the future and planning ahead.
"There were two or three candidates. I thought about what is best for the team going forward. I spoke to Aaron before making the decision and told him there were certain responsibilities and duties that would go with it, and to see if he was happy with it.
"I'm delighted and he was really happy. I made the decision because I thought it was best for the team and the future of the team."
Ramsey is 20, and with any luck, should have a long Wales career ahead of him. Along with Tottenham's Gareth Bale, he will look to lead the Dragons towards a strong future on the international scene.
Although he is still working back towards his best form after returning from his injury, at his best, Ramsey can be the kind of direct driving force in the midfield that some might argue Arsenal have missed since the Vieira/Parlour days. From an Arsenal perspective, the news about his national captaincy will hopefully boost his confidence and aid him further in his return to the glimpses everybody saw early last season.