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Home >> Sports
UPDATED: 20:43, June 08, 2006
Rooney will play if match fit, says Eriksson
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England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson claimed on Thursday that striker Wayne Rooney is "injury free" and will be able to play at the World Cup if he is match fit.

The 20-year-old returned to England's camp late on Wednesday after a scan on his broken foot in Manchester.

Rooney attended England training on Thursday ahead of the opening World Cup game against Paraguay on Saturday.

"I'm doing this in the best interests of Rooney, the England team and 40 million England fans," said Eriksson.

Rooney has been out of action since breaking a metatarsal in his right foot against Chelsea on 29 April.

There were fears the injury would rule the Manchester United striker out of the entire tournament.

But his club issued a statement on Wednesday saying the 20-year-old would be fit - but only after the group stage of the tournament.

United added that at that point a "very careful assessment" would be needed to decide if Rooney could participate.

But Eriksson insisted the star, who had been tipped to be England's star player before the tournament, was only now working on his fitness.

"The good news from Wednesday evening and today is that Rooney has no more injury. He's injury free," he said at Thursday's news conference in Baden-Baden.

"Now, it's up to us to get him match fit and, when we think he's match fit, I'm prepared to take in any specialist we want to take in, or Manchester United want us to take in."

Source: Xinhua

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