Eng­land comes first!


Midweek Sport - - SPORT - By IAN WIN­ROW

STEVEN GER­RARD has blasted moan­ing Pre­mier League man­agers, telling them: Eng­land is more im­por­tant!

A host of bosses have slammed the de­ci­sion to ar­range a friendly clash with Auld En­emy Scot­land tonight – three days be­fore the open­ing top-flight fix­tures.

But Ger­rard said: “I’m sure Roy Hodg­son has had a call off ev­ery Pre­mier League man­ager ask­ing for his play­ers to be used spar­ingly.

“But Pre­mier League man­agers have got to un­der­stand we are rep­re­sent­ing our coun­try and want to play.

“We’ve got four very im­por­tant qual­i­fiers com­ing up and we have a game against our old­est ri­vals, so we’re off with a bang.


“We need to win the four qual­i­fy­ing games af­ter this. It’s still in our hands.”

Ger­rard ad­mits he has spo­ken to Wayne Rooney about the striker’s dead­lock with Manch­ester United, but claims the for­ward is men­tally ready to face Scot­land.

The Eng­land skip­per said: “I think ev­ery­one knows he’s not match-fit, but he’s the same old Wayne Rooney in train­ing.

“I’ve spo­ken to him but for me it’s only about how well he plays for Eng­land.

“It’s im­por­tant we have a fully match-fit Wayne Rooney for the qual­i­fiers in the next two months.”

WE CAN’T DO WITH­OUT ROO: Steven Ger­rard is back­ing Wayne Rooney

(inset) to fire for Eng­land

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