Reports of Wayne Rooney‘s demise are extremely premature, according to the Manchester United and England captain himself.
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To hear Rooney tell it, there’s plenty of games (and goals) left in his boots, despite the fact everyone’s already written him off as excess to requirements for this summer’s European Championship and beyond.
It’s not the first time Rooney has entered a major tournament on the back of a lengthy lay-off due to injury, and he’s confident he can get back to his best before June rolls around — quotes from the Guardian:
“I’ve still got a few years left I feel. I’ll keep trying to, first and foremost, help the team be successful and, if I can score the goals to help achieve that, then that’ll be great.
“Over the last two years my form for England has been really good. I’ve scored a lot of goals. The record stood for more than 40 years, so to be the one to break it means a lot – and then for Sir Bobby [Charlton] to present me with the award as well, that makes it even more special. But it’s something I’m looking to expand now, I’ve got the record and I just want to carry on scoring as many goals as I can.”
“I was playing really well before that injury so it could’ve been different but that’s in the past and you have to look forward.
“I think I’m a different player now from what I was then, so I don’t compare myself – I’m always just thinking about what comes next and making sure I’m at my best for the summer.”
Of course Rooney “still has a few years left” — he’s 30 years old, England’s all-time leading goalscorer and closing in on the same mark at Man United. The fact that Rooney broke into the first team at Everton at age 16 does mean he could potentially break down a fair bit before most pros do in their mid-30s, but now is not that time. Not yet, anyway.