Former Liverpool FC midfielder Steven Gerrard has accused people of jumping on the bandwagon in their criticism of Manchester United and England captain Wayne Rooney, who has endured a torrid 2015-16 thus far
The Red Devils’ captain has received plenty of criticism this season from pundits as well as Manchester United supporters for his less-than-impressive performances, both in the No 10 role as well as playing as the main striker up front.
However, former England teammate Steven Gerrard has leapt to his defence, insisting that Rooney should be England’s main man in the summer’s European Championship in France, given his impressive experience and influence.
Gerrard leaps to Rooney defence
The Liverpool FC legend has slammed some of the criticism directed against Wayne Rooney as ‘unfair’, claiming that his former international teammate’s status and reputation has influenced the discourse regarding his form this season for Manchester United.
Gerrard also insisted that Rooney should be England’s main man at EURO 2016, despite the season the likes of Jamie Vardy and Harry Kane are having. The LA Galaxy midfielder is quoted by the Telegraph as saying: “With England, Vardy is doing well, Harry Kane is doing well, but in a big game who is Englanda s best chance of scoring? Does anyone think it is not Wayne Rooney?
“If there is a penalty in the last 10 minutes to progress out of a group and into the last sixteen or a quarter-final who would you want to take the penalty? Who does everyone else in the dressing room at Manchester United and England look to for inspiration, Who are they all hiding behind pressure wise when it is not going well?
“For me he is getting a little bit on unfair stick. They are not analysing it properly and jumping on this bandwagon. Wayne Rooney is a major player and he is probably the only person capable or proven to get the goals you need to get out of the group to progress in the tournament.”
Rooney’s experience will be invaluable for England
England had a remarkable qualifying campaign under Roy Hodgson, winning each of their 10 group stage games — the only team to achieve the feat — while scoring 31 goals and conceding just 3 in the process.
With several newcomers into the senior national team, including the likes of Jamie Vardy and Dele Alli, the experience of Wayne Rooney will be absolutely priceless for Hodgson and England. As the sole remaining member of the so-called ‘golden generation’, Rooney has by far the most experience in major international tournaments, and even if he does not start every game for the Three Lions, Gerrard is not far wrong about how important the Manchester United man will be.