Wright: Rooney on par with Messi & Ronaldo

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Football News

Former-England striker Ian Wright believes Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney is on par with Barcelona forward Lionel Messi and Real Madrid frontman Cristiano Ronaldo.

Wright claimed Rooney will go down as one of the all-time greats, along with the El Clasico duo, amid criticism that the former-Everton striker had not lived up to his full potential after bursting onto the Premier League stage 10 years ago as a 16-year-old wonderkid.

But the former-Arsenal striker, speaking to Absolute Radio and quoted on, said he feels the England striker deserves to be mentioned alongside the likes of Messi and Ronaldo.

"Messi, Ronaldo, when they finish, they're going to go down as greats and I think Rooney will as well, but I feel that the real greats, they win the Euro[pean Championship] medals, the World Cup medals.

"I think, on ability, all three of them, Ronaldo, Messi and Rooney, should all be in that bracket of players who have done that and that is how you become truly great."

The 26-year-old was recently named England captain in the absence of Steven Gerrard for the World Cup qualifier against San Marino, but the Manchester United striker is yet to hit top form in an international tournament since his displays at Euro 2004 as a 18-year-old.

Rooney has 78 caps for England, and the forward's next hope comes in two years time at the World Cup in Brazil.

But while Leo Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are widely regarded as the two best players in the world, neither has shone in the international arena either.

The past four years have been dominated by Spain, leaving little room for Argentina or Portugal, let alone England.

Messi is a three-time Ballon d'Or winner, and is going for his fourth this year, while Ronaldo won the award back in 2008 after helping Manchester United to the Champions League trophy. Rooney has never won the award, but did receive the FIFPro World Young Player of the Year award in 2005.

Premier League
Manchester United
Cristiano Ronaldo
Wayne Rooney
Ian Wright

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