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Skrtel tipped to stop Rooney again

27 Mar 2009 19:30:00

Skrtel tipped to stop Rooney again

Slovakia coach Vladimir Weiss has backed Martin Skrtel to stop England's Wayne Rooney once more when they face England at Wembley on Saturday.The Liverpool defender, named Slovakia's Player of the Year on Thursday, has kept Rooney quiet in two league victories over Manchester United this season.Skrtel is likely to face another battle against the United striker in the evening friendly but Weiss is confident the Liverpool defender can stop him yet again."I believe he knows Rooney quite well and he can stop him all the time," said Weiss. "We believe he can do it again tomorrow."Skrtel is a very tough player and he knows how to handle Rooney. I believe that he will show that again against England."We hope he will show his performance in the best way. He has just won the Slovakian Player of the Year award so it will be a big boost for his confidence."Rooney's temperament has come under fire since he was sent off against Fulham last Saturday for throwing the ball at referee Phil Dowd.It prompted Dowd to issue the furious Rooney with a second yellow card and the player then thumped the corner flag as he walked to the dressing rooms.But Weiss is hoping the United striker will play the game in the right spirit at Wembley."He is an excellent player and this is a friendly match so I hope we won't see too much anger in his performance," he said.Weiss is also hoping for a better outcome than he experienced on his last visit to Wembley.In April 1990, Weiss was a member of the Czechoslovakia side beaten 4-2 by England in a game that saw Steve Bull score twice with others from Stuart Pearce and Paul Gascoigne.Weiss is hoping that his Slovakia side can come away with a better result against today's England stars."When I was a player here, we lost 4-2 and I remember Paul Gascoigne was playing for them," recalled Weiss. "I hope it will be better tomorrow but it is still an amazing feeling to be here as a coach."But while Weiss accepts Saturday's game is high profile, his mind is more firmly fixed on Wednesday's Group Three World Cup qualifier against the Czech Republic in Prague."Tomorrow is a prestige game and we would like to have nice memories but Wednesday's match is for points and that is the main thing for us," he said.Meanwhile, midfielder Stanislav Sestak is looking forward to playing against he likes of Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and David Beckham.But the Slovakia midfielder insists they are not just coming to swap shirts with the superstar opposition."It is nice to play here against these famous people, it is an honour for us," said Sestak. "It is not every day we can play against England, so we are looking forward to it."Beckham is the famous one and everybody would like his shirt but we are here to play the game and not swap shirts."


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