VIDEO: England legend’s fear for Wayne Rooney’s record bid
Peter Shilton thinks Wayne Rooney may struggle to beat his record of 125 England caps.
Rooney became England’s ninth centurion on Saturday when he captained the Three Lions to a 3-1 win over Slovenia.
At 29 years old Rooney is the youngest Englishman to reach the landmark and he is widely expected to surpass Shilton’s all-time record in the next couple of seasons.
While Shilton is a big fan of Rooney, he suspects the striker’s body may let him down over the coming years, and that may put his bid to surpass England’s former goalkeeper in jeopardy.
“Wayne is a bulldog, he loves the game, he very rarely gets injured, he can take knocks and he could play for at least a couple of years, if not more,” Shilton said.
“If it (the record) does go I will be the first to congratulate him, I still think it will be hard for him, but it’s not impossible.
“When you get to the 29-30 mark, mostly for strikers it’s a little bit downhill; they can lose it fairly quickly. I remember Gary Lineker and Michael Owen seemed to go a little bit overnight. It’s the hardest bit for him, he’s not getting any younger. But if he does break it, it will be a pleasure to shake his hand and say ‘well done’.”
Rooney led the England fight back on Saturday with a crucial penalty as Roy Hodgson’s men came from behind to beat Slovenia in their Euro 2016 qualifier.
Until Jordan Henderson headed the ball into his own net, England had not conceded a goal since the World Cup, but Shilton has his reservations about Hodgson’s options at the back.
“I’m a bit disturbed with us at the back, we need another two or three solid defenders,” Shilton said.
Although Shilton is worried about England’s defence, he insists Hodgson is the right man to lead the team forward and would not be averse to seeing the 67-year-old extend his current contract, which expires after Euro 2016.