Poland v England: Cleverley backs Rooney to become permanent captain
Poland v England: Tom Cleverley believes club team-mate Wayne Rooney will become permanent England captain in the future
Tom Cleverley believes Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has all the attributes needed to become England captain on a permanent basis.
The 26-year-old skippered the Three Lions in the absence of the suspended Steven Gerrard in England’s 5-0 victory over San Marino at Wembley on Friday.
The Liverpool midfielder is set to take the captain’s armband for the World Cup qualifier against Poland on Tuesday, but Cleverley is confident Rooney is someone Roy Hodgson can turn to again in the future.
“He is a leader, a winner and I like playing underneath him as a captain,” said Cleverley.
“Wayne was quite vocal in the dressing-room before [the San Marino game]. He was chipping in with points for the team, to improve the team.
“We are lucky at my club too – we have got so many people you can go to. For quite a young guy, Wayne has had a lot of experience that myself, Danny Welbeck and all the young players in the squad can tap into.
“So he is definitely someone you could go to. He is approachable and someone you can get advice from.”
Following Friday’s win, Rooney admitted he would relish the chance to captain England again.
“If you can get the opportunity to captain your country, it’s something which I think – as a player – you need to grab with both hands,” Rooney said.
“In the future, hopefully that’ll happen. But, at the minute, Steven’s our captain and he’ll lead by example for us.”