Eriksson: English game is still killing Rooney

 

Sven Goran Eriksson has said that English football is still "killing" Wayne Rooney more than it should and that his potential to win any game for the national side should make him the first name on the squad sheet for next summer's European Championships.

Eriksson, The Independent's new football columnist, told the English nation "don't kill Rooney" after the player's dismissal at Gelsenkirchen in the 2006 World Cup quarter-final against Portugal, and he declared after Rooney's three-game suspension for next summer's finals that the 25-year-old is still being subjected to more criticism than he would in continental Europe. "Criticise him for one or two days and then it's over," Eriksson said. "During the first days [the reaction] is the same in England as it would be in Italy, Portugal, Sweden. But here it has a habit of going on forever."

The Football Association is leaning towards an appeal to Uefa over the three-game ban but the Leicester City manager, who also declared in his valedictory press conference at Gelsenkirchen, that Rooney would "win a World Cup one day", insisted that his capacity to score in next summer's final in Kiev's Olympic Stadium made his selection essential, regardless of his absence earlier in the tournament.

"I don't know how [Fabio] Capello is thinking. I guess he is frustrated because it is obvious that Rooney is the best striker we have in England," said Eriksson, whose first column will be published on Wednesday. "I can guess that Wayne Rooney is disappointed as well. But I would take him to the finals – of course. England will go further than the group stage. You have the quarters straight away – you have a very fresh player for the quarter-finals. That's my idea. Rooney, we know, is a match-winner. That's why you have to take a gamble."

Eriksson did that with David Beckham, who broke a metatarsal before the 2002 World Cup and with Michael Owen, who did the same six months before the 2006 tournament. And he would take that gamble again. "I know some people thought that was wrong but if you think about Rooney, Beckham, Owen at that time – you had to take them because they can win a match for you."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee