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England and club doubts as Rooney snubbed

Press Association logoPress Association 26/05/2017

Wayne Rooney's absence from the England squad for games against Scotland and France is perhaps the latest signal that the former captain's time in the international game is coming to an end.

The 31-year-old was once the darling of fans both on the international scene with England and also in the stands at Old Trafford.

But, with his position as a first choice for Manchester United under serious threat, his lack of playing time for his club this season has clearly swayed the thinking of England manager Gareth Southgate.

The England boos has decided against including Rooney for the World Cup qualifier against Scotland in Glasgow on June 10 and a friendly against France in Paris three days later.

When the former England defender took over after Sam Allardyce's short-lived reign last September he made it clear Rooney remained an important part of his plans.

His decision to leave Rooney out indicates he is now more in line with the thinking of United boss Jose Mourinho, who has made the striker an increasingly peripheral figure at Old Trafford this season.

"I can't dress it up any other way. Other players are in really good form and deserve to keep their place," Southgate said.

"We have a lot of players playing exceptionally well in the area of the pitch that Wayne plays."

Rooney holds the goalscoring record for both club and country - 253 and 53 respectively - and right from the start of his career with boyhood club Everton his exploits were making headlines.

A 16-year-old Rooney announced himself to the world in October 2002 with a superb late strike to hand the Toffees a 2-1 win over Arsenal.

And after the move to Old Trafford went through in 2004, the young forward marked his Red Devils debut against Fenerbahce in the Champions League with a brilliant hat-trick.

Rooney's honours with United are impressive and include five Premier League titles, one FA Cup, three League Cups, the Europa League and the 2007-08 Champions League.

His roll of honour with England is in stark contrast and his absence from the latest squad leaves it looking more and more likely he will never add any international trophies to those he has earned with his club.

With all he has achieved during 559 appearances for his club, he has had a considerable amount of criticism to deal with, including from the Old Trafford faithful.

It may be because he is part of an England generation widely accepted to have hugely underachieved.

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