Hart relishing Rooney record chance

Published: Thursday 11th June 2015 by The News Editor

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England goalkeeper Joe Hart is relishing being on the pitch when Wayne Rooney becomes the team’s record goalscorer.

Rooney is just two short of World Cup winner Sir Bobby Charlton’s haul of 49 goals for England.

Sunday’s away clash with Slovenia offers the Manchester United striker another chance to claim a place in history, a week after England drew a blank in a dull Dublin draw with the Republic of Ireland.

The Euro 2016 qualifier is one that England are particularly eager to win, to nudge closer to next year’s finals in France.

And Rooney, the captain of England, will again have a key role to play, as will goalkeeper Hart.

With the record tantalisingly close for Rooney, Hart said: “Wayne will get there, we all know that. He’s our captain, he’s our leader, he’s our talisman.

“I’m looking forward to hopefully being in the team when Wayne makes history.

“But right now he’s all about the team. I’m sure he’d take not scoring for the next five games if we won the games.

“But if we win, generally he scores.”

Hart said England were satisfied with the stalemate against Ireland but admitted it was not a great spectacle.

He said: “We can take everything we can out of the game. Obviously it didn’t get too much love in terms of being a thriller.

“But I think Ireland probably got what they wanted out of it and we got what we wanted.

“We would have loved to win 4-0 and make everyone happy but the ultimate aim is the game against Slovenia. Three points against them is the main thing for us.

“It’ll definitely be seen as a good move if we get a good result on Sunday.”

Hart said defending better had been an England priority since last summer’s World Cup, where defeats to Italy and Uruguay rocked the Three Lions in the group stage.

“That was one thing we wanted to nail down after a disappointing World Cup, where four goals in the first two games ultimately put us out,” he said. “T hat’s something we addressed and have worked hard on as a team.”

Discussing England’s progress in their European Championship qualifying group, Hart said in a press conference: “We’ve made as much as is possible in a qualifying campaign.

“It’s not to the level of group stages of a World Cup.

“We’ve done the minimum I think.

“But we’ve made strides, we’re building a team and we’re building an ethos. We know how we want to play.

“Hopefully we can get as many qualifying wins as possible and move on to France as quickly as possible.

“We’d love to (win 10 out of 10). it would be good for the tournament to put us in a good place.

“Slovenia is definitely a tough game for us. They’re one of the teams that can realistically catch us in the group.”

Published: Thursday 11th June 2015 by The News Editor

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