RUSSELL Penn will wear the York City captain’s armband for the rest of the season.
The 28-year-old midfielder has skippered the Minstermen through an unbeaten February, encompassing victories at Fleetwood and Plymouth, as well as 0-0 home draws with Cheltenham and Southend.
Penn, who was club captain at Cheltenham Town prior to his transfer window switch, assumed the role following an injury to David McGurk at the end of last month.
Long-serving centre-back McGurk has since recovered from a back spasm but Keith Lowe and John McCombe are currently keeping him out of the side.
Chris Smith and Dan Parslow also previously carried out the duty before losing the responsibility due to a loss of form and injury respectively.
But City boss Nigel Worthington is now hoping that Penn can keep leading the team out – at least until the summer.
“We’ve had that many captains this season with Chris Smith, Pars and TY but he’s doing the job at the moment and is doing a good job, so he will see that through until the end of the season and we will reassess it then and go from there,” Worthington said.
“The energy he gets through during the course of a game is absolutely phenomenal and he’s worked very hard since coming in to get up to speed with our fitness levels.
“He’s a very steady and solid player who is leading from the front.”
The Bootham Crescent chief Worthington has also hailed the form of 21-year-old, on-loan Charlton goalkeeper Nick Pope following a run of three consecutive clean sheets.
Commenting on Pope’s strengths, Worthington added: “He’s got big, long arms and deals with balls into the box well.
“He’s positive in those situations, which is a huge thing for a young man.
“When you come for something and get a lot of them but then perhaps don’t get one, the sign of a good ’keeper is you still go for the next one and he does that. That’s a credit to his mentality for somebody so young.”