Thursday 21 September 2017

Paul Hayward: International greatness is slipping by Wayne after another insipid tournament

Wayne Rooney surrounded during the game against Italy
Wayne Rooney surrounded during the game against Italy

WAYNE Rooney will want to avert his eyes when Cristiano Ronaldo continues his mission to win euro 2012 on his own for Portugal in their semi-final against Spain. International greatness is passing Rooney by while his old Manchester United comrade lights up the new frontier of Poland and Ukraine.

With his 54 per cent pass completion rate, and drenched in sweat, the most gifted English footballer since Paul Scholes slipped off the edge off this tournament no nearer to fulfilling the promise of euro 2004.

By the time the 2014 World Cup comes around in Brazil it will be 10 years since he made any appreciable impact on a tournament, unless you count his stamp on Ricardo Carvalho’s privates in Gelsenkirchen six summers ago.

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