No extra insurance on Rooney, says FA

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The Independent Football

The Football Association has dismissed claims that they took out extra insurance to cover any injury to Wayne Rooney at the World Cup finals.

After the Newcastle chairman, Freddy Shepherd, called for the FA to adopt a "one-rule-for-all" policy in the wake of a newspaper report suggesting that the Manchester United striker had been treated as a special case, the FA clarified the situation.

"We have assured Freddy Shepherd this morning that we have one insurance policy in place which covers all England players," an FA spokesman said. "No additional policies have been taken out, or premiums paid, to cover any individual players. This policy compensates clubs for both permanent and temporary injuries sustained by players whilst on international duty with England at a considerable cost to The FA."

Shepherd had said his club is considering legal action in the fight for what they regard as adequate compensation for Michael Owen's World Cup injury. The 26-year-old is facing at least five months out after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament injury in England's 2-2 draw against Sweden on Tuesday.

"Michael is our record signing and he went to Germany as the leading goalscorer in the England squad, so we have every right to feel aggrieved that he returns to us injured and without adequate compensation paid to us," Shepherd said. "The World Cup generates millions of pounds for Fifa and the associations and we should be adequately compensated."

The Fifa president, Sepp Blatter, has promised to consider compensation for Owen. "We have a special insurance fund of £6m for cases of this kind," he said. "The English FA will now have to look at this matter because they made Owen available to play and this will then be put to Fifa. This case will be decided at the end of the tournament, but this fund does exist for this kind of serious injury."

A Newcastle spokesman responded to Blatter's comments, saying: "We have noted with interest these comments from Sepp Blatter with regards to Fifa having set up a special insurance fund.

"How much is available from the fund will be a factor, but it's reassuring to read these comments, which show Fifa clearly sees the need for an insurance fund to be in place at such a huge tournament as the World Cup."