England manager, Gareth Southgate has justified his Wayne Rooney’s exclusion from the England squad.
England’s all-time leading goalscorer, who has 119 caps, has been overlooked for June’s matches against Scotland and France because of the “good form” of other players according to Southgate.
I can’t dress it up any other way. Other players are in really good form and deserve to keep their place
Southgate said: “We’ve a lot of players playing exceptionally well in the area of the pitch that Wayne plays.”
Rooney has only started 15 league games for Manchester United this season.
The 31-year-old – with 53 international goals – was also not included in Southgate’s previous squad in March for the matches against Lithuania and Germany because he was not fully fit after a leg injury.
But even when fit, his appearances at club level have been reduced since manager Jose Mourinho took over at United last summer.
“I said last time [in March] that he was a bit short of matches – he’s had some matches now but we’ve got players that have done really, really well for us in Adam Lallana and Dele Alli,” added Southgate.
“We’ve got Marcus Rashford, Harry Kane coming back and Jermain Defoe who did really well for us last time, while Jamie Vardy’s been in excellent form in the second half of the season.
“I can’t dress it up any other way. Other players are in really good form and deserve to keep their place.”
England travel to Hampden Park on 10 June for their qualifier against Scotland. Southgate’s side lead Group F with 13 points after five games. Scotland are fourth with seven points.
They then travel to France for a friendly on 13 June.