Joleon Lescott honoured to act as stand-in England captain and be back in action
Joleon Lescott enjoyed a second taste of being England captain against San Marino on Friday in a reversal of fortunes for the Manchester City defender.
Lescott was not even selected as part of Roy Hodgson's initial squad to face San Marino and Montenegro.
But the withdrawal of Rio Ferdinand and Michael Dawson earned him a recall earlier in the week before Gary Cahill also puled out.
And he started alongside Chris Smalling in a new central defensive partnership on Friday before taking on the armband from Frank Lampard after 65 minutes.
He had previously been acting skipper for the final 17 minutes of Hodgson's first match in charge against Norway in Oslo last May.
Lescott said: "I think I was the oldest player on the pitch towards the end and the manager deemed it fit to give me the armband, which was a nice bonus.
"It was a great honour. I've had it before, the first time was in Norway but any time you get the armband, it's a great honour.
"It was a contrast (after being left out), but you've got to keep yourself prepared physically and I've been doing that.
"I wasn't in the squad originally, but the Manager said he wouldn't have any qualms if he needed to call me in.
"Playing for England is the ultimate achievement of your career. That's 25 caps now which is nice."
Lescott has slipped down the defensive pecking order at City this season, despite being one of England's leading players at Euro 2012.
But he still feels ready to step in at international level whenever called upon.
The former Wolves and Everton man added: "I played a couple of weeks ago against Barnsley (in The FA Cup) so it was nice to play again.
"Any time I am called upon, I have to make sure I'm ready with City and England."