Fabio Capello is convinced that the injection of confidence Wayne Rooney gained after his stunning hat-trick for Manchester United in last weekend's 8-2 victory over Arsenal is just the tonic he needs to end his international goal drought.
The 25-year-old striker has scored just one goal in nearly two years for the Three Lions, but Capello believes his return to form for England is just around the corner.
As Rooney and Co. prepare for tonight's Euro 2012 qualifier against Bulgaria in Sofia, the Italian boss is hopeful of a big response from his players, in order to keep their campaign on track and cement their place at the top of Group G.
When asked if he felt the Red Devils front man was in a different state of mind, Capello joked: "He's different, probably something to do with his hair transplant. He's really happy.
"It's nice for him. It's a good moment. You can see in every moment with him that he's really happy. And that makes a big difference to the group. He's a really important player.
"We know the value of Rooney. Also, the players know Rooney at the top of his form can beat his opponent and other teams, which is what we want to see.
"He's scored a lot of goals, which is a fantastic medicine for a forward. He needs to score goals."
Meanwhile, England skipper John Terry backed Capello's observations that Rooney seems to have changed his temperament, and that he now looks like he is enjoying his football once again.
"He seems very relaxed, he is in a good place. He's playing brilliantly for United and scoring," said Terry. "They're flying as well, which helps his situation.
"But he's a man and a player who's oozing confidence. That certainly rubs off on the rest of us."
Terry also spoke about the role played by the more senior players in Capello's current squad - a squad dominated by exciting young players meaning Rooney is now classed as one of the elder statesman for others to look up to.
"He pushes himself to the maximum every day, doesn't let people make mistakes in training or slip up without letting them know," he continued. "He's a big character.
"We all talk about his quality, but he's a real character to have around the camp off the field. On the pitch he is a real winner as well, which sets the example for the younger players coming in."
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