ROY BACKS ROONEY
England manager Roy Hodgson has praised Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney by saying that he expects to put behind his troubles with his club to shine in the friendly match against the Republic of Ireland. Hodgson is expected to name Rooney alongside Daniel Sturridge in the match.
The striker recently handed a transfer request to Manchester United after growing frustrated with life on the sidelines. The arrival of £ 24 million signing Robin van Persie has taken the limelight away from Rooney, who has been linked with a move to PSG and Chelsea in the last few weeks.
He is expected to cost in the region of £ 30 million and Manchester United are ready to cash in on the 27-year-old. Despite this constant speculation surrounding his future, Hodgson expects Rooney to put a starring performance against the Republic of Ireland. He has said that despite his troubles at club level, he has never lost his faith in the player. David Moyes, who will be replacing Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United's helm, is expected to hold talks with Rooney in the next few days.
Moyes has indicated that he is willing to keep Rooney at Old Trafford despite his desire to move away from the club.
"If anything I find Wayne's desire stronger than when we first met. I have nothing but the greatest faith in him. I know he'll be really desperate to get out and show how desperate he is. Good players can have bad games, it's not an exact science. But my faith in Wayne Rooney has never wavered," said Hodgson. Rooney is expected to get a mixed reception from the fans when he steps out onto the pitch. This is one of the important matches for England, but Hodgson is expected to make a couple of changes to the starting line-up.