Definition of Skipper

When one is reading about the sport of football (or soccer), they might come across the term 'skipper'. In baseball, this term refers to the team manager. Does it mean the same across sports?

The meaning of the term Skipper in the world of Euro football is explained.The term 'skipper' in football shares a lot in common with its use at sea. Just as the captain of a ship is informally called a skipper, the captain of a club can share the same title. They are usually one of the older or more experienced players that have been at the club for a long period of time.

Skippers can be identified by the wearing of an armband during matches. Officially, the only duty of the captain is to participate in the pre-match coin flip. However, they are often given other leadership duties. They are seen as the person to lift team morale, lead the team in celebrations if a trophy is won and act as the representative between the team and the referee.

Some clubs name vice-captains, or even third and fourth captains for when the regulars are unavailable. However, these are not called 'vice-skippers' and would probably only be referred to as 'skipper' for the game by commentators.

There are a number of these 'skippers' who are legends of the game, for both their playing abilities and their leadership skills. Players like John Terry of Chelsea, Paolo Maldini at AC Milan, Tony Adams at Arsenal and Carles Puyol of Barcelona are some of the most famous and successful examples of club captains.