John Terry has been dropped as England’s captain after a crucial meeting with boss Fabio Capello at Wembley earlier today.
The news comes after reports this week over the defender’s private life, where it was revealed he allegedly had an affair with Chelsea team-mate Wayne Bridge’s girlfriend.
It had also been reported Terry got model Vannessa Perroncel pregnant and had paid for her to have an abortion.
In light of these recent allegations, many calls had been made to drop Terry as captain of the national team – especially with such an important World Cup campaign in South Africa just four months away.
Capello arrived back in the UK yesterday after a break in Switzerland recovering from surgery to his leg and today held showdown talks with the Chelsea skipper.
The England boss said in a statement: “After much thought I have made the decision that it will be best for me to take the captaincy away from John Terry.
“As a captain with the team, John Terry has displayed extremely positive behaviour. However, I have to take into account other considerations and what it is best for all of the England squad.
“What is best for all the England team has inspired my choice. John Terry was notified first.
“When I chose John Terry as captain, I also selected a vice-captain (Rio Ferdinand) and also named a third choice. There is no reason to change this decision.”
After the meeting, a disappointed Terry released a short statement: “I fully respect Fabio Capello’s decision. I will continue to give everything for England.”
Manchester United skipper Rio Ferdinand has been tipped to replace Terry as England’s leader going into the World Cup.