WHAT THE PAPERS SAY

WHAT THE PAPERS SAY

The extracts on this page are taken from selected national newspapers. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United.

20/06/2012 08:41

Papers: Gladiator Wayne

Paul Hayward writes in The Telegraph

Rooney still England's gladiator
Tournaments have not been kind to Wayne Rooney. Nor has Wayne Rooney always been kind to tournaments. But the foul-up in Ukraine’s defence that allowed the returning talisman to earn his country a quarter-final against Italy was the sweetest charity. On Tuesday night England reclaimed their most potent asset, prompting Steven Gerrard, the England captain, to say: "Wayne took all the pressure on his shoulders when we needed him to. Sometimes a tap-in is as important as a 30-yarder." Sent off in the 2006 World Cup and listless in South Africa four years later, Rooney was forced by his own irascibility in a qualifying game in Montenegro to wait until the third game of this championship for his chance to be England’s saviour. Memories of his dramatic impact on Euro 2004 as an 18-year-old have lost their force. The redemption plan was not progressing well until Gerrard swung in yet another of his defence-baffling crosses and it bounced through defender and goalkeeper before popping onto Rooney’s head a couple of yards out. It may have been hard work for him, but boy, did he mean business.

Several papers pick up on Rooney’s explanation of his goal celebration, in which he mimicked applying hairspray to his head. "I used a bit of Andy Carroll’s product," he said. "Hopefully I will end up with hair like him! He asked me to do it if I scored and so I did it."

United will likely come up against an old foe in Didier Drogba next month after the striker completed his move from Chelsea to the Reds' Tour 2012 opponents, Shanghai Shenhua.

And goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak, who was released by United in June, has joined Championship side Brighton.

More: Rooney sets up Italy date | Rooney's Nike advertBlog - United at the Euros

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