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Sam Allardyce still undecided on Wayne Rooney captaincy for England

by Tanveer Arayan

New England manager Sam Allardyce remains undecided over whether Wayne Rooney will captain England during his tenure as manager.

Rooney was given the England captaincy by Roy Hodgson after Steven Gerrard hung up his international boots in 2014.

The 30-year-old begun brightly with the armband, becoming England’s highest ever goalscorer and helping his side reach Euro 2016 with a 100% record in qualifying.

However, in the wake of a disastrous Euro 2016 campaign, Allardyce has refused to provide any guarantees over Rooney’s role as captain.

Asked whether Rooney would continue as captain, he said: “It’s far too early to make any predictions,”

“I’m going to leave that until we meet all the players and get all the coaching staff together and plan for the internationals in September.

“It’s my first day in, I’m getting my feet under the table and meeting everyone.”

Following humiliation in France, Allardyce is likely to be ruthless in imposing a more direct, physical style on this England squad. Can Rooney, now approaching his thirties and notably regressing in energy and speed, form the axis of this new style of play? That remains to be seen.

However, as the side’s most senior member, the 30-year-old makes a contribution off the pitch as well. The current side is youthful, exciting, but occasionally complacent, and Rooney’s pedigree and sheer presence as captain will certainly help to invoke a ruthless winning mentality – something notably absent in the summer.

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