Gareth Southgate confirms Wayne Rooney will not start for England against USA

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Former Three Lions captain Rooney last played for England in November 2016 but will make his 120th and final appearance for his country against the United States.

But the Football Association made it clear that Wayne Rooney will get the captain's armband and will only make a cameo appearance.

Talks about Rooney, 33, coming out of global retirement to receive his 120th cap have been ongoing for a year, Southgate confirmed, but the striker did not want his appearance to distract players ahead of the World Cup.

"He deserves it. He was a great captain for us".

He said: "I like Wayne, I get on well with him and his record speaks for itself".

That decision has been criticised in the English media with a number of exciting young prospects needing more game time to be tested at the worldwide level and the U.S. game seen as preparation for what could be a crucial Nations League decider against Croatia four days later.

"It's a really good thing that everyone should be a part of".

Gomez is expected to be named in Southgate's team if he is fit to play, given his form for Liverpool and England this season. He was a fantastic player for England and it's fine by me if we want to celebrate his achievements.

The England boss said the idea was sprung from a similar tribute Germany gave to Lukas Podolski, admitting honouring former players is not an area the FA has been strong in over recent years.

"That's not to say that Wayne does not deserve a tribute but give him a presentation, don't just give caps away, which is wrong and also denies a young player a chance as well". We can't do anything about how we've done it in the past, but I know how much it meant to the squad of '66 to come to St George's Park a few months ago and have a dinner when we mentioned the entrance after Sir Alf Ramsey. "And we'll see in a few years how close I am".



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