Newcastle United manager Steve McClaren has hinted that new signing Jonjo Shelvey will captain the team for Wednesday night's Premier League clash with Stoke City.
Regular skipper Fabricio Coloccini has been ruled out for the Magpies' next two games with a calf injury, and Shelvey was handed the armband for the club's 2-1 friendly victory over Lillestrom during their 18-day break from competitive action.
McClaren refused to confirm whether the England international would lead the side out again at the Britannia, but did suggest that his leadership qualities were one of the reasons he was brought to the club in January.
"The captain has to embody what you are trying to say, that's one of the reasons we brought Jonjo Shelvey into this club, because he epitomises what we want to achieve going forward," McClaren told reporters.
"We need someone to drive this team and lead by example both playing and vocally. It will be interesting to see after a lot of criticism about the team, interesting to see how we cope without Colo and see who steps forward.
"We've talked a lot about bringing in characters with Shelvey and [Andros] Townsend. He's certainly been vocal. But it's about everybody and we've lacked that especially away from home, and that's one of the reasons we're not winning."