England manager Roy Hodgson has hailed Wayne Rooney ahead of the Manchester United star’s 100th cap for the national side, Daily Star reports.
The Football Association usually hands out the landmark award after the player plays his 100th game, but they are willing to break tradition and present the achievement to the 29-year-old before the Three Lions’ Euro 2016 qualifier with Slovenia.
Man United legend Sir Bobby Charlton is set to give the accolade and England boss Roy Hodgson believes there is still more to come from Rooney, who only needs seven more goals to beat Charlton’s all-time England record of 49.
“I think he will become better,” said Hodgson. “I think that he has had a turbulent career, bursting on to the scene as the wonder kid and being the saviour of English football.
“He has had to suffer the slings and arrows because of the times, when, of course, he has not been able to be the saviour of English football and people have criticised him for it.
“Having built him up to a very high level they have worked very hard to knock him right back down again.
“I think that has given him an incredible maturity and strength and I think that all the qualities he had at 19 he basically still possesses.
“But what he does have, which he didn’t have at 19 or 24 or 25, is this incredible experience, this incredible belief and mental strength.
“That is something we will need going forward, mental strength – that’s a harder thing to teach or to instil in the squad then tactics or technique.
“It’s good that people like Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard , John Terry and Ashley Cole before Wayne were able to do that but now Wayne really finds himself as a last bastion of this group of players who played together in very good England team.”