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England need a fully-fit Wayne Rooney in South Africa

Wayne-RooneyThe ankle injury Wayne Rooney picked up in Manchester United’s 2-1 Champions League defeat at Bayern Munich could wreck England’s World Cup hopes. It’s estimated that the United hot shot will be out between two and four weeks.

It could have been much worse for both the English champions and for England. However if he does miss four weeks then it doesn’t give him much recuperation time.

Vital

Unfortunately for United and England the injury has hit Rooney at a crucial time. United face their main title rivals Chelsea on Saturday in one of their biggest games of the season. He will also miss the second leg of United’s Champions League tie with Bayern.

The next few weeks and games could have a huge bearing on how successful the season is for United. Some would argue that United are not a one man team but you can’t deny the fact that Rooney’s 34 goals this season have proved vital.

Without Rooney United is not the same force as with the former- Everton star. He is enjoying by far his best season of his career and it’s unfortunate that he has picked up this injury at such an important time of the season.

England

With just over two months to go before the World Cup Fabio Capello must be sweating over the striker. England boss Fabio Capello sticks by his idea of only selecting fully-fit players. Rooney now has two months to get fully-fit ahead of the big tournament.

There is no doubt that the United striker will do everything he can to get on that plane. I’m sure he will be in the England squad for South Africa 2010. The only concern I’d have is if he wasn’t fully-fit and struggled for fitness.

Rooney played at the 2006 World Cup despite not being fully-fit and he never really performed to the best of his ability. He failed to find the net in Germany and it showed that he wasn’t really ready for the tournament.

The injury he picked up ahead of World Cup 2006 was also in April. Let’s just hope he makes a better recovery from this injury as England and the World Cup needs a fit and in-form Rooney. Rooney is one of the best players on the planet and for him not to get a chance for play at South Africa would be disappointing.

Special

There are not too many players like Wayne Rooney in world football, let alone in the English game. It would be impossible for England to find a replacement for Rooney. It’s like Argentina losing Leo Messi, Spain losing Fernando Torres or Brazil losing Kaka. Although they would be replaced, the team wouldn’t be the same without them.

Timing

England have a history of star players coming in to big tournaments not fully-fit. David Beckham was in the squad for World Cup 2002 when not fully-fit and underperformed as a result, despite England getting into the quarter-finals.

Like I mentioned before Rooney himself entered the last World Cup having spent two months out sidelined with a foot injury. He never regained full fitness and England again exited at the quarter-finals after Rooney was dismissed for a stamp on Portuguese defender Ricardo Carvalho.

He has matured greatly since 2006 and has learnt to control his temper. Since he has matured his game has gone from strength to strength. This improvement has lead to the outstanding form that we have seen this season.

Strength

I can see Wayne Rooney coming back stronger from this injury and hopefully the World Cup won’t come too soon for him. What I do know about Rooney is that he is now strong both physically and mentally. I can see him bouncing back and starring for England in South Africa this summer.

Wed 31 March, 2010
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