Rooney allays injury fears
Wayne Rooney has declared himself fully fit and fresh and is saving his goals for the World Cup after a mini drought with England. Rooney has managed only one goal for his country in the past year in a sequence spanning seven internationals since his brace against Andorra last June. But his importance to England's chance of glory in South Africa cannot be underlined enough. And Rooney has played down fears he was suffering from an ankle problem after being hampered by a groin injury during the latter part of the campaign. He is also hoping he will reap the benefits of having a less intense end to the campaign because of his injury concerns than some of his England team-mates. Rooney said: "Fitness-wise I feel good. I have trained every training session with England since we got together. "I had a bit of a stiff neck after the game (with Mexico) but that should pass in the next day or two. "I haven't got an ankle problem. Like I said, I've trained every training session. I don't know where that (story) has come from. It's a load of rubbish." Rooney added: "Do players feel jaded after a long season? Of course, it's a long season for everyone. I'm quite fortunate in I haven't trained a lot in the last six weeks. "I have had a full week's training at the England training camp in Austria and I felt good out there. "It can sometimes be a bonus having a break during the season. Fingers crossed it will be." Rooney admits he has had to curb his natural tendency to go flat out and be ultra competitive in training sessions to avoid the risk of injuries. He said: "You have got to try not to injure yourself, or your team-mates, so you have to hold back sometimes in tackles in training to make sure you're all okay for the World Cup." Regarding his recent lack of goals for his country, Rooney said: "Of course I'd like to score, but that's the way it is. "I'm glad it's in a friendly and not in the World Cup that it didn't happen (against Mexico). Hopefully I'm saving them up for the World Cup." Rooney admits he is itching for the World Cup to get under way with England to face the United States in Rustenburg on June 12. But the Manchester United star also recognises the importance of the build-up programme. He said: "You'd like to be out there in South Africa preparing for the first game, but this is also an important time. "We are trying to make sure we get it right and are ready for South Africa."
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