Wayne Rooney has contradicted claims from Sir Alex Ferguson by insisting his ankle has been injury-free all season.
The Manchester United striker made the statement in the aftermath of England's goalless draw with Montenegro at Wembley in a Euro 2012 qualifier. His comments are unlikely to go down well with United boss Ferguson in a troubled season for the 24-year-old which has also seen allegations about the player's private life.
When asked after the Montenegro game if his ankle had caused any problems, Rooney replied: "No, I've had no ankle problem all season."
Rooney also stressed the need to be playing regularly to reach full sharpness after a stop-start beginning to the campaign.
He repeated his denial when asked the question for a second time.
Then when asked "Why did Alex Ferguson say you had?", Rooney laughed and replied: "I don't know."
But he does concede he is still lacking in some sharpness and needs a run of games.
Rooney said: "I felt better against Montenegro. You need the games to get your fitness in. I started the season, played a few games and felt I was getting sharp, and then missed three or four games so you don't feel as sharp as I thought I would do.
"Towards the end of last season I was injured but during the World Cup, I trained every session and had no problems fitness-wise.
"I think in this league you need to keep playing because, if you are not at full fitness, then it's difficult to break teams down."
Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms