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English Best XI to have played with Wayne Rooney 

Wayne Rooney once again back in the England Training session
Wayne Rooney once again back in the England Training session
Varun Nair

The last man in the famous golden generation of England who underachieved, Wayne Rooney on Thursday will once again wear the jersey of the Three Lions in a match that is set to celebrate the DC United striker's time and his contributions to English football.

Rooney is the second most capped player and the most capped outfield player in the history of English football with 119 caps. The Liverpool born striker earned his maiden English call-up in 2003, aged 17 years, under the management of Sven Gorran Eriksen when he came on in the second half against Australia in a friendly in 2003.

He scored his first ever international goal in a 2-1 victory over Macedonia in the 2004 Euro Cup qualifiers before the striker then made his first major tournament appearances in the 2004 Euro's earning a place in the UEFA 2004 Team of The Tournament.

On the 27th of June 2016, Wayne Rooney scored his 53rd and final goal for the Three Lions in the surprising 2-1 defeat against Iceland in the 2016 European Championship. The former Manchester United on the 23rd of August 2017 announced his early retirement from International football amidst rumours of another England call-up by Gareth Southgate.

With this being a farewell match at the Wembley let's take a look at the best XI players to have played with the former Manchester United striker.

Formation 4-3-1-2

Stats: www.englandstats.com

Goalkeeper- Joe Hart

Once the England No1, Joe Hart now has been relegated to being named third on the goalkeeper list
Once the England No1, Joe Hart now has been relegated to being named third on the goalkeeper list

The former Manchester City keeper made his first international appearance on the 1st of June 2008, coming on as a half-time substitute to David James in a friendly match against Trinidad and Tobago.

It took the former Shrewsbury FC custodian almost 3 years to nail the first team position, making his competitive debut in 2012 Euro Cup qualifiers, after the Three Lions saw a number of high profile mistakes from their custodians in major tournaments, the Rob Green howler still haunts the English.

The Burnley shot-stopper is still an active member of the Three Lions squad and has amassed a total 75 caps for them. He has also represented England in 3 World Cups and 2 Euro Cups. Joe Hart has played alongside Wayne Rooney in 52 matches.

Defence

Left Back - Ashley Cole

The Forgotten man
The Forgotten man

The left-back during the golden generation of English football but who sadly is now the forgotten man. It's a bit unbelievable that once Ashley Cole was among the best left-backs in the world. The 37-year old who still plays club level football with the MLS side LA Galaxy has over a 100 caps for England making his debut in 2001 against Albania in the 2002 World Cup Qualifiers with Sven Goran Eriksson giving him his first Three Lions cap.

The former invincible has amassed a total 107 caps making him the 6th most capped player in English football history. The full-back also has the honour of being the most capped black English player of all-time dethroning former Liverpool man John Barnes when he made his 80th cap against Algeria in 2010. The full-back also has the dubious honour of being the most capped English outfield player without a goal.

Ashley Cole spent 12 years with the national team representing England in 3 World Cups and 2 Euro Cups before finally announcing his retirement on the 11th of May 2014 after being omitted from the 2014 English World Cup squad, earning his final cap in 2014 against Denmark. Rooney and Cole played together 70 times.

CB - Rio Ferdinand

Rio Ferdinand is a football pundit with BT Sport now
Rio Ferdinand is a football pundit with BT Sport now

Yet another part of the famed golden generation, Rio Ferdinand is regarded as one of the best centre-backs to have played for the Three Lions. Rio Ferdinand earned his first ever English cap against Cameroon on the November 15,1997 aged just 19 years, with Glenn Hoddle giving the then youngster his first cap.

The former Manchester United defender earned a total of 81 caps during his career captaining the side between 2010 and 2012 after stripping his partner John Terry of captaincy.

The Centre-back spent 13 years with the national team and was named in 4 consecutive World Cup squads from 1998 to 2012 but was never even once was he named in the European Championship squads.

The London born lad scored 3 times for the Three Lions scoring his first goal against Denmark in 2002. The 40-year old played his last match on the June 4, 2011 against Switzerland in the 2012 Euro Cup qualifiers before finally announcing his retirement from International football in 2013. Teammates at Manchester United, Rooney and Ferdinand played 37 times together for the Three Lions.

CB - John Terry

The assistant coach of Aston Villa
The assistant coach of Aston Villa

John Terry together with Rio Ferdinand formed a dream centre-back pairing but failed to live up to their potential. The heart of the defence during the golden generation, Terry made his debut Serbia and Montenegro on the 3rd of June 2003 under the management of Sven Goran Eriksson.

One of the greatest centre-backs ever produced by England, Terry made amassed a total of 78 caps for the Three Lions scoring 6 times for them before with his debut goal Hungary in 2006.

The former Chelsea man spent 9 years with the international team going on to represent England in 2 World Cups and 2 Euro Cups, captaining the side between 2006 and 2010 and then later in 2011.

The present Aston Villa assistant coach announced his retirement on the 23rd of June 2012 with his final Three Lions cap coming up in the World Cup Qualifier against Moldova on the 7th of September 2012. Terry and Rooney played together 54 times for their country.

RB - Gary Neville

Gary Neville is the co owner of Salford City and a football pundit
Gary Neville is the co owner of Salford City and a football pundit

With the addition of Gary Neville, the defence will be made up of the famed but failed golden generation defensive line-up. The former Manchester United man made his debut on the 3rd of June 1995 under the management of Terry Venables.

One of the greatest full-backs for England Neville spend 11 years with the national team making a total of 85 caps for his country and represented his country in 3 Euro Cups and 2 World Cups.

The 43-year old never announced his official retirement from International football but played his last ever international match against Spain on the 7th of February 2007. Neville is also the most capped right back in England history.

Teammates at Manchester United, Gary Neville and Wayne Rooney played 24 times together in national jersey.

Midfield

CM/CDM - Paul Scholes

Like Neville Scholes is a co-owner of Salford City and is a football pundit
Like Neville Scholes is a co-owner of Salford City and is a football pundit

It's always a mystery why none of the coaches that managed the English golden generation managed to get the best out of the midfield trio of Scholes, Gerrard and Lampard.

Paul Scholes, the man who cut short his international career due to the inability of his coaches to play him in his preferred position. One of the most gifted ever players to play the game of football, Paul Scholes made his international debut in May 1997 in a friendly against South Africa under the management of Glenn Hoddle.

The Manchester United legend spent only 7 years with the national side representing the nation in 2 World Cups and 2 Euro Cups with a total of 66 caps and 14 goals to his name.

Scholes scored his first ever international goal against Italy on the June 4 1997 and even has a hattrick to his name coming against Poland. The central midfielder announced his early retirement from International football on August 2004 and made his last ever cap for England against Portugal in the 2004 European Championships.

Wayne Rooney and Paul Scholes have played a total of 13 matches together in the English jersey.

CM - Frank Lampard

Lampard now is the Derby County manager
Lampard now is the Derby County manager

Perhaps best remembered for his disallowed goal against Germany in the 2010 Wolrd Cup FInals, Frank Lampard along with Scholes and Gerrard made a dream midfield but failed to live up to their potential.

The greatest goal-scoring midfielder of the Premier League made his debut on the 10th of October 1999 in a friendly match against Belgium under the management of Kevin Keegan. The Chelsea legend spent 14 years with the national team and made a total of 106 caps, making him the 7th most capped player in English history along with Sir Bobby Charlton, representing the nation in 3 World Cups and 1 European Championship.

The Derby manager scored 29 goals for his country, making him 9th on the list of all-time top scorers along with Vivian Woodward, scoring his first ever goal against Croatia in 2003. Frank Lampard made his final ever cap against Costa Rica on the 24th of June 2014 and announced his retirement from international football on the August 26, 2014.

Lampard and Rooney played 72 matches together for the country.

CM - Steven Gerrard

Steven Gerrard is now the managers of Rangers
Steven Gerrard is now the managers of Rangers

One of the greatest players of all time, Steven Gerrard made his England debut on the May 31 2000 against Ukraine in a friendly under Sven Goran Erikson and scored his first ever goal in the famous 5-1 drubbing of Germany in 2001.

The Liverpool born lad spent 14 years with the national side winning 114 caps, the fourth most capped player in English history, and was named the captain of the side between 2010 and 2014. The Rangers boss also has 21 goals to his name and represented the country in 3 World Cups and 3 Euro Cups.

Along with his midfield partner Frank Lampard, Gerrard made his final ever appearance in the English jersey on the June 24 2014 against Costa Rica in 2014 World Cup before announcing his retirement from international football on the July 21 2014.

Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney were team members for 71 matches.

CAM - David Beckham

One of the most well-known footballer/celebrity in the World, David Beckham was much more than a beautiful face with 13 years of international career and 21-years of club football. The 43-year-old made his debut on the 1st of September 1996 against Moldova in the 1998 World Cup Qualifier match under the management of Glenn Hoddle

The Manchester legend amassed a total of 115 caps and was the outfield player with the most number of caps for the Three Lions till Wayne Rooney erased his record. Beckham is the third most capped player in English history and has also 17 goals to his name with his first ever goal coming against Colombia on June 26 1998 in the World Cup.

The midfielder who was known for his ability to score from free-kicks led England between 2000 and 2006 and represented his country in 3 World Cups and 2 Euro Cups. David Beckham played his last ever international match on the October 14 2009 against Belarus in the 2010 World Cup Qualifier.

ST - Michael Owen

Michael Owen now works as a football pundit
Michael Owen now works as a football pundit

The last ever Englishman to receive the Balon d'Or Award, Michael Owen had a wonderful start to his footballing career but injuries cut short the strikers once-promising career. The striker made his debut on February 11 1998 against Chile in a friendly, aged 18 years.

The former Liverpool man spent 10 years with the national team earning 89 caps, the 11th most capped player in England history. The 2001 Balon d'Or winner scored 40 goals for the Three Lions and is the 5th highest goal scorer for England. The striker scored his first goal on the 27th of May 1998 against Morocco.

The latter part of the former Real Madrid man career saw him missing a lot of matches through injuries after making his debut in 1998. The striker went on to represent the Three Lions in 3 World Cups and 2 Euro Cups.

Michael Owen played his last ever international match on the March 26 2008. Teammates at Manchester United, Wayne Rooney and Michael Owen has played 27 times together for the Three Lions.

ST - Harry Kane

The only player in the list who still is a first-team player for the Three Lions
The only player in the list who still is a first-team player for the Three Lions

The man who has taken the goal-scoring mantle from Wayne Rooney, Harry Kane has so far enjoyed an impressive start to his England career reaching the 2018 World Cup semi-finals being the highlight of his still young career.

The Tottenham man made his debut on the March 27 2015 against Lithuania in the 2016 Euro Cup Qualifiers and scored his first ever international goal in that same match. The forward is the first choice striker for England since the retirement of Wayne Rooney and already has 19 goals in 34 appearances for the Three Lions in a relatively time span of 3 years.

Harry Kane is now the captain of the English Football Team after being named the captain for the first time in 2017. The 2-time Premier League has played 12 matches with Wayne Rooney in his short career.

Edited by Emeka Monyei

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