Dietmar Hamann believes Wayne Rooney’s goal and appearance record doesn’t cover up what has ultimately been an unsuccessful international career for the striker, and has told England fans to move on from the ‘Rooney era’.
The Three Lions captain was booed by supporters during Saturday’s World Cup qualifier against Malta as his on-pitch struggles continued.
Again deployed in a deeper role he has yet to fully adapt to, Rooney failed to make much of an impact against the minnows and was jeered by a section of England fans during the 2-0 win.
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The Malta clash was Rooney’s first start in four games. The Manchester United skipper has fallen down the pecking order under Jose Mourinho and was benched for the club’s previous three fixtures.
Hamann has admitted the fans, and perhaps the England coaches and the player himself, should admit his time in the international spotlight may have come to an end.
But the former Germany international insists supporters should accept Rooney is no longer the player he once was, rather than booing him, which Hamann said was ‘out of order’.
Speaking to talkSPORT host Jim White, Didi said: “When you look at his record for England, it shouldn’t be personally but as a team, because you have to see the whole package.
“I don’t really care how many games he’s played, how many goals he’s scored or how many assists he’s got – I want to see how successful the team was.
“And you’ve got to say in the last ten years he’s been part of a hugely unsuccessful England team.
“He’s finding it hard to get into the Manchester United team, so I think it’s a matter of when, not if, he gets dropped.
“And if England played a World Cup final tomorrow with the likes of Rashford, Kane, Vardy and Sturridge – would Rooney even be in the equation to start that game? In my eyes he wouldn’t and I think a lot of the fans feel the same.
“The reaction from the fans [the boos] was out of order for such a respected player but they just have to move on now.”