• Premier League

Rooney backed for England captaincy

ESPN staff
August 14, 2014
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Phil Jagielka has tipped new Manchester United skipper Wayne Rooney for the England captaincy as he said the striker would be "a great choice" to lead his country as well as his club.

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Rooney was confirmed as the new United captain by manager Louis van Gaal on Tuesday and replaces Nemanja Vidic, who left join Inter Milan.

England are also looking for a new captain after Steven Gerrard decided to announce his international retirement having won 114 caps. Everton captain Jagielka, as a regular in the team and someone who leads his club, could be one of the contenders but he believes Rooney is the likeliest to take the armband.

"It looks like Wayne's going to be the main candidate for it, so I don't see why not," Jagielka said. "If you look at the way he's matured over the last few years, obviously there are games where he probably does get a little too heated up, but that's what we love about the way he plays: his passion.

"I'm sure the England fans would love that as well. I think it's definitely a good decision for Manchester United to make him captain and I think the way he's progressed over the last few years, settling down with a family and all sorts, I think he'd be a great choice as England captain."

Rooney, 28, has scored 40 goals in 95 games for England since making his debut in 2003 and manager Roy Hodgson hinted this week that he will be the probable replacement for Gerrard, while saying he was also considering Frank Lampard.

Dwight Yorke has backed Van Gaal's decision to appoint Rooney and said giving Robin van Persie the captaincy would have been a "disaster."

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