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Rooney is a complete player, says Poch
6:00am Saturday 19th October 2013 in Saints News
Mauricio Pochettino says Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney is a rare player who understands every single facet of the game.
Rooney’s performances over the past week helped England book a place at next summer’s World Cup finals, in Brazil, and the striker is expected to start at Old Trafford this afternoon.
Saints boss Pochettino this week spoke about the forward’s threat, issuing some high praise.
“I was speaking about it with my staff, and we were saying he is the type of football player who is able to understand what is needed and what’s required of him at every single phase of the game,” he said.
“He’s a fantastic player that’s able to play up front, to drop a bit higher in the pitch. He’s a fantastic footballer that’s able to understand what’s required of him in every single phase of the game.”
During his press conference this week, Pochettino initially described Rooney as one of the top ten players in the world, but suggested he was not quite at the same level as Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo.
But he appeared to reconsider that view when he was asked if the United striker was actually underrated.
“I honestly rate him as high as Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi,” said Pochettino. “I have a great admiration for how he is as a football player.
“I think he’s an amazingly talented football player and I rate him as high as those two players.”
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