Is Wayne Rooney England's best ever striker?

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After scoring international goal number 50 on Tuesday night, Wayne Rooney is now England's leading goalscorer. The 29-year-old dispatched a penalty against Switzerland at Wembley to over-take Sir Bobby Charlton, who had held the record for 45 years.

But, even though the Manchester United player has scored more than Charlton, who also played for United, he still comes second to Sir Bobby in many peoples' eyes.

It took both men 106 appearances to reach 49 goals and Rooney's record-breaking goal came just one game later. But, when you look at what the 77-year-old Manchester United legend achieved and how he played, it will be hard for Rooney to eclipse that if he is ever wants to be considered as England's greatest marksman.


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Not only did Charlton score 49 goals from midfield, which is an incredible feat, he is a World Cup winner. And not alone that, along with captain Bobby Moore, he was probably the most influential player in the winning 1966 team. 

During the summer of 1966, Carlton was commanding from the center of the park and marauded from box to box. He scored a screamer against Mexico early in the tournament before grabbing a brace in the semi-finals against Portugal. 

As England tried to defend their title four years later in Mexico Sir Bobby still held his importance and was pivotal in the team's run to the quarter-final. During the quarter against West Germany, manager Alf Ramsey withdrew the midfielder to preserve him for the semi's, with England leading 2-0 at the time. This proved to be a defining moment as the Germans turned the game around- many believe England would have won the game if Carlton has stayed on the pitch.

These major tournament performances is something that Rooney is missing in a England shirt and maybe why he is not considered in Carlton's league, yet.

Another striker who is definitely worth a mention when it comes to England's greatest strikers is Gary Lineker. The former Leicester player scored 48 goals in just 80 games for his country.

Lineker played in another world cup team that is affectionately remembered by England fans. England's 1990 team made it all the way to the semi-finals in Italy. The team fell just short of the final as they lost on penalties to another strong West Germany team.

Lineker and the team was welcomed back to the England as if they had won the tournament, with the poacher, along with Paul Gascoigne, being the focal point of the team, scoring four goals.

Four years earlier the MOTD presenter scored six goals and took home the World Cup golden boot in another decent England performance. 10 world cup goals is an impressive record.

These world tournament performances and his prolific goals to games ratio is again why Lineker may be placed higher than Rooney when it comes to England's greatest scorer.

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