Fabio Capello: Wayne Rooney Needs to be More Selfish

Jeff HarbertSenior Writer IMay 29, 2008

It’s not often that you hear a coach telling one of his players he needs to be more selfish.  But that is exactly the case for England, with Fabio Capello advising Wayne Rooney to be more egotistic on the football pitch.

The England manager is hoping to fully exploit his star forward’s talent, stating that the Rooney doesn’t score enough goals.  The Manchester United striker is a key member of the England team, and Capello is hoping Rooney can return to the form which saw him terrorize defenses in the Euro 2004.

"When I saw Rooney in Portugal, he played very well," said Capello. "He has to play like he did then.

"I feel the same as Sir Alex Ferguson. I have spoken with Rooney maybe three times now. And I've said to him that he is too generous.  He needs to be more selfish, otherwise he is tired and not fresh.

"It is important to be fresh near the goal. Rooney is very important to us.  His potential is huge but he can do better. He knows he must stay in front of goal more. He knows he must score more goals.

"He has won a lot—but not enough," concluded Capello.

Rooney was involved in England’s friendly match against the USA at Wembley last night and despite looking lively at times, failed to get his name on the score sheet. 

And unfortunately for Rooney, his chances of establishing his goal scoring prowess for Capello this summer are limited due to England’s failure to qualify for the Euro 2008.

But Rooney, who recently won the Premier League and Champions League with Manchester United, is yet to really prove himself as an in-and-out goal scorer.  The United No. 10 often likes to drop deep behind his fellow strike partner, where he is able to see more of the ball and create for his teammates.

There is no denying Rooney has the ability to score goals, but it’s just a matter of him doing so on more of a continual basis.  And in order for this to happen, at least according to Capello, Rooney needs to be more selfish.