EURO 2020

Wayne Rooney Believes England Should Start Marcus Rashford Over Jack Grealish Against Germany

Ali Shibil Roshan
Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney / Aleksandra Szmigiel - Pool/Getty Images

Wayne Rooney believes England should play Marcus Rashford over Jack Grealish against Germany.

The Three Lions have qualified for Euro 2020 round-of-16 as Group D toppers, and will face Germany, who finished second in the Group F, in the match.

England have not quite impressed in attack so far, registering only two goals in the group stage. And, Rooney believes Gareth Southgate should start Rashford against Germany, given how Die Mannschaf plays.

Rooney added one of Raheem Sterling, who scored England's both goals in this tournament, Bukayo Saka, who dazzled against Czech Republic, or Jadon Sancho should join Rashford and Harry Kane to form the team's attacking three.

"After all my championing of Jack Grealish, I wouldn’t play him from the start against Germany. He was one of England’s better players against the Czech Republic and it is not that my opinion of him has changed," Rooney wrote in his column for The Times.

"My thinking is entirely down to how the Germans play. Different opponents demand different approaches and Tuesday’s game is tailor-made for Marcus Rashford – but not Jack.

"The more players you have who want to take the ball to feet, the more Germany can press, so instead of Jack I’d be looking to have runners either side of Harry Kane.

"My instruction would be to attack the spaces behind their wing backs when they go forward and make runs down the channels to the sides of their centre backs – especially given Mats Hummels’s problems against pace.

"Rashford is ideal for the job and one of Raheem Sterling, Bukayo Saka or Jadon Sancho would complete my forward line. Raheem has been in brilliant form and Saka impressed against the Czechs, while Sancho knows the German players the best, so I don’t think you could lose with whichever option you chose.

"The first thought when England win it should be to play into the channels and have Rashford, and Sterling/Saka/Sancho going in behind. Having runners will get England up the pitch and take Germany’s counterpress away."

Meanwhile, Germany have been inconsistent in this tournament; they looked unconvincing against France and Hungary, but showed what they are capable of in their 4-2 thrashing of defending champions Portugal.