Rooney still key to Eng­land plans, says Al­lardyce

The Myanmar Times - - Sport -

NEW Eng­land man­ager Sam Al­lardyce ad­mit­ted Wayne Rooney has a sig­nif­i­cant part to play in his plans but re­fused to give as­sur­ances about the player’s fu­ture as cap­tain.

Rooney re­cently ex­pressed a de­sire to con­tinue as skip­per, de­spite crit­i­cism fol­low­ing Eng­land’s dis­as­trous cam­paign at the 2016 Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship in France.

Manch­ester United man­ager Jose Mour­inho last week promised the 30-year-old that he would keep the arm­band at club level.

But Al­lardyce, speak­ing at his first press con­fer­ence since tak­ing over from Roy Hodgson, did not fol­low suit.

In­stead, Eng­land’s record goalscorer will have a ner­vous wait un­til Septem­ber when Al­lardyce will meet his play­ers for the first time ahead of their World Cup qual­i­fier with Slo­vakia.

“I don’t want to put my­self out in the open just yet. It’s a de­ci­sion that I’ll make once I’ve got my feet un­der the ta­ble,” Al­lardyce said, when asked if Rooney would re­tain the cap­taincy.

“I have got to leave that un­til we reach all the play­ers and get the coach­ing staff to­gether and plan for the in­ter­na­tion­als in Septem­ber.

“Will I wait un­til I meet the play­ers? I think so. Put it this way – I still think Wayne Rooney still has a mas­sive place to play in the Eng­land side. I don’t think there is any doubt about that.”

Al­lardyce would not be drawn on whether he thinks Rooney is more suited to a mid­field or strik­ing role, and plans to fol­low Mour­inho’s lead on where to de­ploy the player.

“What’s Rooney’s best po­si­tion? I’m not say­ing. I think Jose will de­ter­mine that,” added Al­lardyce.

“Be­cause if Jose says he is not go­ing to play him in cen­tre mid­field and he is play­ing up front and scor­ing goals for Manch­ester United then it would be point­less me bring­ing him into Eng­land and play­ing him in cen­tre mid­field.”

Al­lardyce, 61, ac­knowl­edged it is in­evitable there will be oc­ca­sions when he clashes with Premier League man­agers now he has crossed over into in­ter­na­tional man­age­ment.

“The de­mands on Premier League man­agers and de­mand on me as Eng­land man­ager is bound to cause some con­flict down the line be­cause the pres­sures are far greater than ever be­fore,” he said

Al­lardyce, who signed a two-year con­tract to man­age Eng­land, has promised his play­ers that they will work in a “fun” en­vi­ron­ment while he is in charge.

“We don’t have to make it too mo­not­o­nous when we are ac­tu­ally to­gether,” he said.

“My style is very much in terms of man-man­age­ment, hav­ing a good re­la­tion­ship with the play­ers. Not be­ing dis­tant. That’s not my style. I like to be in amongst the ban­ter.”

Martin Glenn, the Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion’s chief ex­ec­u­tive, claimed that Al­lardyce was the only can­di­date that was of­fered the Eng­land job.

And the former Black­burn, Bolton, New­cas­tle and Sun­der­land boss re­ceived a pos­i­tive en­dorse­ment from leg­endary Manch­ester United man­ager Alex Fer­gu­son, who was con­sulted over the ap­point­ment.

“The sin­gle big­gest thing [Fer­gu­son said] was he’s a win­ner. He’s got the edge. Win­ners can some­times be a bit awk­ward. That was his phrase. He’s a win­ner,” Glenn said.

Sammy Lee, Al­lardyce’s former as­sis­tant at Bolton Wan­der­ers, will be part of Eng­land’s back­room staff while Glenn also con­firmed that the FA are hold­ing talks with Bay­ern Mu­nich as­sis­tant coach Paul Clement over a part-time role. –

Photo: EPA

Eng­land cap­tain Wayne Rooney leaves the sta­dium af­ter the UEFA EURO 2016 round of 16 match to Ice­land on June 27. Ice­land won 2-1.

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