“Defensively he’s all over the place” - Wayne Rooney offers opinion on England star he loves ahead of Euro 2024

Rooney questions Alexander-Arnold
Rooney questions Alexander-Arnold's defensive credibility.

England legend Wayne Rooney believes manager Gareth Southgate will play Trent Alexander-Arnold in the midfield at the upcoming UEFA Euro 2024. Primarily a right-back, the 25-year-old could line up alongside Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham in the midfield for the Three Lions in the upcoming tournament.

Alexander-Arnold has played at the center of the pitch at Liverpool, however, Rooney has reservations about him. The former Manchester United attacker doesn't trust his defensive abilities and hopes Southgate doesn't use him as a defensive or central midfielder.

Rooney said on The Overlap (via TBRFootball):

“I think he will go with Trent. I think he’s probably the most gifted player we have with the ball at his feet. Defensively he is all over the place. I wouldn’t have him anywhere near the middle of the pitch. I love Trent actually. On the ball, the stuff he can do nobody else can do it, but…”

Conor Gallagher, Kobbie Mainoo and Adam Wharton are the other three midfielders Southgate has picked in the England squad for Euro 2024.

Rio Ferdinand praises England's Trent Alexander-Arnold but raises question about his midfield experience ahead of Euro 2024

Wayne Rooney's former Manchester United teammate Rio Ferdinand has similar reservations about Alexander-Arnold. While he praised the Liverpool defender's ability on the ball and passing range, he questioned whether the player has enough experience of playing in the midfield.

Ferdinand said on his YouTube channel:

“I think [Kobbie] Mainoo plays a part in this tournament, but I don’t start him initially. Same as Trent. One of those two, I think, could almost come in and take a shirt at some point maybe.
“But I just look at it like this with Trent. Trent’s ridiculous. I can’t talk highly enough about him with the ball. His passing range is like De Bruyne, Beckham-esque, like them levels, right? Put the ball anywhere you want, but he’s, I don’t know, right now he’s not at that level. Has he played enough games in midfield?”

England have been drawn alongside Serbia, Denmark and Slovenia in Group C of the tournament. The Euro 2020 finalists will begin their campaign against Serbia on Sunday, June 16.

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Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee
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