Roo Legend: Rooney Retires from England duty!

By on September 8, 2017

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Wayne Rooney has shocked the footballing world by announcing his international retirement a year early! The thirty-one-year-old had previously stated his plans were to stop playing for England after the 2018 World Cup in Russia but the Everton forward is already calling it quits for the Three Lions after declining the opportunity of a recall for qualifying games against Malta and Slovakia next month. Manager Gareth Southgate had given the all-time top-scorer for England a chance to come back into the fold but the Toffees man would rather concentrate on his club career, having re-joined the Goodison Park outfit from Manchester United earlier this summer. Rooney had an opportunity to rest during the international break instead of linking up at Wembley, which will give him the legs to potentially add to his 200 Premier League goals over the next couple of years with the Blues. He has only Alan Shearer as company in the “200 goal club,” with the ex-Newcastle hitman, who called time on playing for England at an early twenty-nine-years-old, holding the all-time record of 260 Premier League finishes.

Doff 119 Caps to Rooney’s Career!

The departing captain claimed 119 caps between 2003 and 2016, the most for any outfield player, with only legendary goalkeeper Peter Shilton winning more. The ex-United skipper scored for Ronald Koeman’s side before the international break in a 1-1 draw with Manchester City at the Etihad, leading to claims for an international recall, but given the renewed opportunity, the Englishman would rather make it a Roo-tirement from the England playing scene. England gaffer Southgate was in the stands to watch that encounter, with City goalscorer Raheem Sterling and sent-off full-back Kyle Walker among the other English talents on display. The Toffees will Roo-joice (rejoice) at the prospect of having such a talent professional fully focused on playing well for them as they balance Europa League play with domestic ventures this season.

Captain Kane?

Tottenham striker Harry Kane is a favorite to lead the line for Southgate’s side in Rooney’s absence and don the acclaimed armband going into next year’s World Cup. While Rooney has scored two goals in two Premier League starts so far this season for boyhood club Everton, having grabbed the winner in a 1-0 victory over Stoke on the opening day of the season, Spurs’ twenty-four-year-old forward struggled in August. Kane could also take up the regular number ten jersey for the English team from now on as Marcus Rashford is seen as another long-term striking option England’s future. Rooney is still only thirty-one, though, and could have added some much-needed experience to the St George’s Park changing room. Although the Everton pajama-wearer blisteringly burst onto the scene with some impressive performances at Euro 2004, he wasn’t successful at any other major tournaments and his last tournament strike came in the 2-1 defeat to Iceland at Euro 2016.

PHOTO CREDIT: Ben Sutherland [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

About Richard Lewis

Richard Lewis can relate almost anything to football and quite often does! You may have seen Richard's previous ideas and work in the BBC Match of the Day Magazine, from 2011 to present. He is a Manchester United and England fan, but has gone to see Leyton Orient play with his O's season ticket in the 2013/14 campaign. Aside from football, Richard has written articles on Doctor Who and studies English Language and Linguistics at the University of Westminster. Aspiring sports journalist.