Rooney is on top of the world, says Giggs

United striker should be seen in same class as Messi and Ronaldo, claims veteran

Ryan Giggs believes Manchester United team-mate Wayne Rooney is edging closer to the select group of players currently regarded the best in the world.

The 24-year-old has just completed a memorable week, which began with his first four-goal haul in the victory over Hull. Rooney then headed home the injury-time goal that secured another Wembley appearance for United at the expense of Manchester City in the Carling Cup, before finally finishing off a sensational second goal in the demolition of title rivals Arsenal at the weekend.

Giggs believes Rooney's form could soon earn him the kind of recognition currently enjoyed by Lionel Messi, Kaka and former Old Trafford team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo. "He is getting nearer that group," Giggs said. "You have seen it for England and for us on the bigger stages. That is what all the top players do. The best thing is that Wayne is still developing. He is 24 now but he is only going to get better. His appetite is strong and he is a great player to have in your team."

Rooney's talent has never been in question since he first burst onto the scene as a raw teenager with Everton, scoring a memorable winner against Arsenal at Goodison Park in 2002. He followed that up by becoming one of England's key men at Euro 2004 before moving on to United, where his talent is set to earn him a lucrative new contract this summer.

It is a different quality Giggs notes. At the level he has operated at for almost two decades, pure ability is almost taken for granted. What Giggs likes about Rooney is his willingness to keep working when events conspire against him.

"Even if he is not playing well he still causes problems for the other team," he said. "That is a very rare quality. Even with players who are genuine match-winners, if they are not playing so well, normally you don't see them.

"But if Wayne is not having the best of games, which is not very often, he never gives up. He believes he is going to create chances. He believes he will get them and he is going to score goals. More often than not, he does."

Sir Alex Ferguson also knows Rooney's importance to his side is growing, with Giggs chiming in with his manager's assessment that the striker has moved his contribution to a different level now he is concentrating on the core aspects of his job.

"Wayne has taken his game to another level," Giggs said. "Everyone knows what Wayne is like. He wants to be involved. He wants to set up the play and finish the moves. Sometimes you cannot do that but he has learnt to be patient. He has developed his game so that now he is a goalscorer as well as joining in with the overall play. I know if I am putting the ball in the box, with his movement and bravery, Wayne is going to get on the end of things. Wayne has worked hard at that part of his game and he has definitely improved."

Arts and Entertainment
filmPoldark production team claims innocence of viewers' ab frenzy
Life and Style
Google marks the 81st anniversary of the Loch Ness Monster's most famous photograph
techIt's the 81st anniversary of THAT iconic photograph
News
Katie Hopkins makes a living out of courting controversy
people
News
General Election
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
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

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders