England skipper Gerrard impressed by “fantastic” Wayne Rooney
England captain Steven Gerrard lauded Wayne Rooney for a brilliant performance and superb discipline in the World Cup qualifier against Montenegro at Podgorica City Stadium on Tuesday. Wayne Rooney provided England with an early lead, but his side wasn’t able to capitalize on this advantage to score more goals.
Wayne Rooney scored in his fourth successive World Cup qualifier making him the first England player to achieve such a feat since David Beckham accomplished this almost a decade ago. Wayne Rooney was given the marching orders for kicking a player from the Montenegro team last time England visited the Podgorica City Stadium, which was during the Euro 2012 qualifiers.
Since then Wayne Rooney has been extra careful about red cards and not getting riled by the opposition. Steven Gerrard is well aware of ticks the Manchester United star as he midfield maestro plays for rivals Liverpool. In spite of the historic battle between Manchester United and Liverpool, both players forget about their differences when playing for England.
“Wayne is a fantastic player and a great goal-scorer,” Steven Gerrard said. “If the lads in the team can create the service for Wayne, we know he will score goals. He also deserves credit for that goalscoring record. Hopefully, he will get more goals and fire us to the World Cup. I also thought his behavior was magnificent. He had been on the agenda in the press all week with people wondering how he was going to behave. I thought he handled himself magnificently and got us that important goal.”
Wayne Rooney’s goal against Montenegro is his 35th for the country. The 27-year-old forward is now only five goals behind fourth-placed Michael Owen on the list of highest goalscorers for England.
England are still in danger of losing entry in the World Cup through automatic qualification since Montenegro are still the group leaders. England needed to win against Montenegro in order to displace them from the top spot.
Rooney’s goal was his 35th for his country and he is now only five behind fourth-placed Michael Owen in the all-time list of England goalscorers.
“At half-time we were very happy,” Steven Gerrard said. “We were in control and we played very well for 45 minutes. Then for some reason we stopped playing after the break and we let Montenegro back into the game. We finished the game really strongly but we are disappointed with the 30 minutes in the second half when we let them back into the game.
“But credit to them, they kept pushing and pushing and we have to hold our hands up and say they deserved an equalizer. We will have to wait and see how the other teams do in their fixtures but we are more than capable of winning the last four matches.”