‘Out-of-sorts Rooney’s being played out of position’

Wayne Rooney

Wayne Rooney

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Former England manager Graham Taylor is concerned by Wayne Rooney’s recent performances after the striker’s indifferent display in the 2-1 World Cup defeat to Italy.

Rooney was a hot topic of conversation following the result in Manaus, with the Manchester United forward providing a sublime cross for Daniel Sturridge to score England’s goal but appearing uncomfortable overall in an out-of-position role on the left wing.

Three Lions boss Roy Hodgson leapt to the under-fire striker’s defence, pointing to his assist, yet Taylor believes Rooney needs to be given a central role.

“This business of asking him to play wide, I’m not too certain it’s working,” Taylor said.

“From a personal point of view, I would like to see him playing in that centre-forward position because I think that’s where you get the best out of him.

“Asking him to come out wide, it gives me the impression at times that he doesn’t like that and he’s not into that.

“I’m not in any way, shape or form telling Roy who to select, but for me it’s a little bit worrying seeing his performances at the moment. They’re not of the Wayne Rooney type that we know.”