England boss urges Van Gaal to play Man United star up front

England manager Roy Hodgson has urged Manchester United boss Louis van Gaal to use Wayne Rooney as a striker, rather than deploying him in midfield, according to reports from the Mirror.

Rooney is close to breaking England’s all-time goal-scoring record but has been used by Van Gaal as a central midfielder recently, resulting in the former Everton ace to still be goalless in 2015.

Fans have become frustrated seeing the 29-year-old playing in a deeper position, but Hodgson has confirmed he will continue using Rooney in attack as a striker.

Hodgson said: “Well, he’s a goal-scorer, isn’t he? So one always likes to see one’s goal-scorers in positions where they can get into the box and in and around the box.

“If you’ve got several other goal-scorers and you can afford to use one of your goal scorers a bit further back, that’s fine.

“But he’s our top goal-scorer in the qualifiers, he’s just a couple of goals away now from being England’s leading goalscorer, so I hope he will continue to score goals for us.”

The former Liverpool manager went on to comment that Rooney is an amazing footballer, and that he has the versatility and the ability to play anywhere on the pitch.

He added: “Wayne’s the sort of player, he can play anywhere. You couldn’t surprise me if, one day, he played right-back – and did it very well. He’s a very, very good footballer.

“We’ll only use him in the position that suits our team and I don’t know that will be centre midfield, where he plays for Manchester United, because they’ve got other players and that’s where they think he does the best job for him and I fully respect that.”

Rooney’s last goal for the Red Devils came on Boxing Day against Newcastle over a month ago, and he hasn’t managed to get one shot on target in 450 minutes of Premier League football this year.

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