Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard has said the critics who have turned on his England team-mate Wayne Rooney in the last few weeks have been making "lazy" assumptions.
The Manchester United striker, who is currently training in the United States in a bid to regain his fitness following injury, has been slammed for saying he wanted to leave the club because of their lack of ambition.
He then did an amazing U-turn and signed a lucrative new deal after one of the most discussed top episoides in recent football history.
Lampard told BBC Radio Five Live:"People who call him thick, but it's just a lazy thing to say by looking at him and saying 'he's a footballer, he looks quite tough because he comes from that background' and all that kind of stuff and the way he plays, but he is sharp.
"I think the people who are calling him thick have got a certain element of thickness about them, because they haven't even invested the time to speak to him.
"He doesn't speak to the press that much for them to make that judgement of him.
"He's a confident boy and he has a sensitive side to him. During the World Cup we'd sit in a room together and watch some of the other games and stuff like that.
"If you read the headlines of the last few weeks you can get an impression of someone but he's a very sensitive lad, you can have a good conversation with him about anything you want.
"He's a very cute, worldly lad for how young he is. He has no problem relating to older players, he treats everyone the same.
"Some people like to align themselves to the bigger names in the squad, to speak to certain players or stick to their own little group. Wayne talks to David Beckham the same as he would to a new player who's just come into the squad from Stoke or Bolton, and that's the beauty of him I think as a person.
"He's got a great sense of humour. I love being around people who will make me laugh, and he makes you laugh constantly. When you're sat at a dinner table with 20 people he can dominate the conversation just through wit and the confidence in the way he speaks.