Tonight, Wayne Rooney broke the England all-time goal scoring record, formerly held by Sir Bobby Charlton. He is now England’s first 50 goal man and he did it in 107 games.
Sir Bobby’s previous record stood at 106 games and 49 goals. The two Manchester United men were tied before the England v Switzerland Euro Qualifier.
In the 82nd minute, Sterling’s tricky feet proved too much for the Swiss defence and they fouled him in the box. The 60,000 strong crowd started chanting “Rooney, Rooney, Rooney”.
Rooney picked up the ball, set it down and stepped back, Wembley fell silent. The striker stuttered his feet, ran in and smashed the ball into the top of the net, besting the keeper’s hand on the way in. Unstoppable.
He ran to the corner celebrating, the team swarmed him and the crowd chanted his name. He is now England’s all-time top goal scorer, and will be for a long time to come.
Talking to ITV in a post match interview Rooney said:
“You take each game as it comes. I went through a spell in 2008 I think where I didn’t score for a while, then Roy came in and he let play with the freedom that I need”
Let’s hope Louis van Gaal listens to that last bit, and stops putting Rooney in the current restricting lone striker role.
Rooney’s first goal came against Macedonia 12 years ago when Emilie Heskey headed the ball down into his path, and Wayne smashed it home.
The other record that he broke with his goal tonight was scoring in most consecutive qualifying games. His record stands at 7 consecutive matches.
This is a grand achievement from the Manchester United man that cannot be knocked. Those who doubt him will only realise how good he is once he’s gone. But, only being 29, they’ll have a while to wait yet.