Share this story

Player of the Week: Rooney still has plenty of gas left in his scoring tank


Wayne Rooney showed he still got the magic touch.

On Monday, he notched another milestone in his sterling career.

And as if he wants to impart on everyone, please don’t count him out yet. He may be 31 years old already but the hunger, the fire and the ferocity in front of goal is still there.

He joined Alan Shearer in becoming just the second player to score 200 goals in the Premier League with his strike against Manchester City.

That match though ended in 1-1 draw after Raheem Sterling saved City from defeat.

But Rooney deserved all the accolade.

This despite the fact that he was overlooked for the England squad by manager Gareth Southgate for games ahead versus Scotland and Spain in June.

On Wednesday, Rooney retired from international duty, saying it is now time to “bow out.’’

While playing for England over 14 years, he scored 53 times in 119 internationals. He won 119 caps, second only to Peter Shilton.

Southgate is expected to name a squad on Thursday for the World Cup 2018 qualifiers away at Malta, September 1, and home to Slovakia three days later.

In lieu of his recent feat, the ageless striker claimed his heart remains with his boyhood team as he reiterated his desire to “focus’’ on helping the Toffees this season rather than getting an international recall.

The former Manchester United and England captain played 13 years at Old Trafford, where he became the club’s leading scorer with 253 goals.

He is also the Three Lions’ all-time leading scorer with 53 strikes.

And he has been rejuvenated after re-joining Everton this summer, scoring in the club’s opening Premier League fixtures against Stoke and City.

Thus, after converting at the Etihad Stadium, he celebrated by cupping his ears in front of the home backers.

“It was nice,’’ he said, describing the precious moment. “To do it today in such an important game for us, with tough games coming up, it was a sweet moment and I am sure the red half of Manchester will have enjoyed it as well.’’

Only the great Shearer before Wayne has done the feat since the inception of the Premier League back in 1992-93.

Shearer himself showed happiness at Rooney’s latest accomplishment.

He took to Twitter to praise him and said: “It’s been lonely in this Premier League 200 club. Welcome and congratulations, Wayne Rooney.’’

During his sterling career at Blackburn and Newcastle United, Shearer scored 260 goals.

Wayne is 60 goals away from matching Shearer’s total.

At the rate the Everton main man is going, and barring any sudden drop in form or him vexed by injury, that accomplishment may soon be mirrored or surpassed.