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Davies named Canada captain ahead of Copa America

Rene Nijhuis/MB Media / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Alphonso Davies was named captain of Canada's men's national team ahead of this summer's Copa America.

Head coach Jesse Marsch, who finalized his tournament squad last week, installed the Bayern Munich defender as the new leader of the side Monday. Midfielder Stephen Eustaquio will serve as vice-captain.

"Alphonso is a young and experienced professional who has all the tools to be an excellent captain. He has been in the spotlight from a young age and handled it very well, I know that he is up to the challenge of taking on a more expanded role with more responsibility," Marsch said in a statement.

"Stephen is also a great leader who has already formed a partnership with Alphonso, along with the leadership council, that will lead us into a home FIFA World Cup in 2026."

Davies, 23, has already amassed 48 international caps after making his debut in 2017. He's a four-time recipient of Canada's Soccer Player of the Year award.

Already the undisputed star of the team, Davies said Marsch has pushed him to become a leader since the American assumed his role on the bench.

"Off the pitch, (Marsch) challenged me. He asked me questions, difficult questions, that I don't really think (about) every day," the typically reserved Davies said earlier this month about the possibility of wearing the armband, according to The Athletic's Joshua Kloke. "It's a challenge with those questions. It put me in a position where I'm not really comfortable in.

"But I know that it's part of life. You have to rise to the occasion, and I'm definitely willing to do that and learn from him."

Davies will lead his compatriots onto the pitch against Lionel Messi and reigning world champion Argentina when Canada features in the opening match of Copa America on June 20.

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