The importance of a captain is often debated. For some, it is nothing more than symbolism, a reward for an illustrious career or recognition of a player's experience. In England, however, the captaincy means much more. A captain is a player who leads by example—an ambassador for the club on and off the field.
Former England manager Fabio Capello once said:
In Spain or Italy, the captain is the oldest player or the one with the most caps. Here [in England] it is different. You look at the captain in a different way.
Manchester City have a fine tradition of captains, and here we look at the six best in the club's history. The success enjoyed during their time as captain was one criteria for being included, as was their ability to lead with distinction both on and off the pitch.
Rob Pollard is Bleacher Report's lead Manchester City correspondent and will be following the club from a Manchester base throughout the 2013-14 season. Follow him on Twitter here @TypicalCity.