The Football Association says there is no dispute between Sir Alex Ferguson and Sven-Goran Eriksson over Wayne Rooney’s place in the World Cup squad. England coach Eriksson says he wants to include Rooney in his squad despite his broken foot, but Ferguson says United are in a better position to judge.
“There has been very good communication between Sir Alex and Sven. There is no rift,” said an FA spokesman to the Daily Mail.
“We’re working on what’s best for Manchester United, England and Wayne.”
Rooney broke the fourth metatarsal bone in his right foot late in Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Chelsea. The early diagnosis was that he would be out for six weeks, exactly the period of time between him suffering the injury and England’s opening World Cup match, against Paraguay on June 10. Eriksson has indicated he will take Rooney to Germany for the tournament whether or not he is fit, but Ferguson took a far more cautious approach.
“We will do our best to get the boy to Germany but if he is not fit, he is not going to go,” said Ferguson.
“In six weeks’ time Rooney will have another two weeks to get fit to play in the quarter-final of a World Cup. That is a wild dream. Sven saying he’ll take Wayne fit or not was something we didn’t want. I have left messages on his phone but I have not spoken to him. I have tried to get hold of Sven so I can give him as clear an opinion from us as possible because he will be reading a lot of stuff in the newspapers. We have spoken to the England doctor and I think it is important that I give as much as information as I can to Sven to make sure he is absolutely clear on what road he can take. Wayne will be in plaster for the next few weeks and he’ll be having regular scans to see how it is healing. But obviously the club will deal directly with the Football Association and make sure they are kept fully informed of Wayne’s progress. We are doing a CAT scan on him on Wednesday and he will get that checked every week. Without doubt it is a crippling blow for England. When you see brave players staying down after a tackle you know it’s genuine and he’s in pain and that’s what I felt with Wayne. At first we didn’t think it was too bad, but when we sent him for the scan it identified the problem and we realised what a blow it was for the boy and for England.”
“I would think this injury is even more of a killer-blow to him because he knows he is missing major tournaments. He’s a more mature, more rounded player who has improved dramatically over the last two years. I said a few weeks ago that I didn’t want to see this kind of pressure on a lad of 20. Other more experienced players such as David Beckham, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, John Terry, Rio Ferdinand and Gary Neville, should be taking the mantle. If England don’t have Wayne Rooney they will need to look at getting inspiration from other players.”
To catch the latest news on Man Utd., visit the hottest soccer fan site on the net right now, with its dedicated RSS feed.