Wednesday 13 December 2017

Rooney injury ‘like something out of a horror film’, says Walcott

Wayne Rooney looks set to miss the next few weeks of football due to a head injury
Wayne Rooney looks set to miss the next few weeks of football due to a head injury

Paul Hirst

THE lengthy gash on Wayne Rooney's forehead is so gruesome that it has left him looking like a character out of a horror film, Theo Walcott has revealed.

England face Moldova and Ukraine in two crucial qualifiers over the next week, but Rooney will not feature in either fixture after a nasty collision with Phil Jones in training last week.

On the basis on Walcott's information, Rooney, 27, might want to keep out of the public eye in the short term.

Pointing to a 500ml water bottle on the top table of his press conference at St George's Park yesterday, Walcott said of the injury: "It's about that big. It's a very big gash.

"It is not a nice sight to be honest. It is not going to help his looks I wouldn't think.

"It's not very nice to see. It's like something out of a horror film."

After scoring five goals in Liverpool's first four matches of the season, Daniel Sturridge was the obvious replacement for Rooney, but he sat out training yesterday with a thigh injury and is unlikely to be fit for the clash against Moldova at Wembley on Friday.

Luckily for England manager Roy Hodgson, Danny Welbeck and Rickie Lambert have started well this season and Walcott is sure the Three Lions will have enough firepower to pick up six crucial points regardless of which striker leads the line in the upcoming fixtures, which could prove vital if England are to qualify for the World Cup.

"It is sad to see Wayne out, but it is an opportunity for someone to come in and take their chance," Walcott added.

"Danny Welbeck has started the season well for his club and Rickie Lambert has had a great start to his England career, so the manager has some great options and I am sure he knows what to do."

Having beaten Moldova 5-0 in Chisinau at the start of the qualifying campaign, England are expected to win comfortably again on Friday night at Wembley.

There is an inevitable danger that complacency might creep in to the camp, especially with a crucial game in Ukraine four days later, but Walcott insists the squad will deal with the match professionally, just as they did against San Marino in March.

"Even if it is Moldova we need to show them respect," Walcott said.

"When we played San Marino at their place we won 8-0 and we didn't go through the motions.

"It will be similar on Friday. It's will be nice to go into Tuesday's game with a great win and performance and no injuries."

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