England Team To Wait Rooney in World Cup

England coach Sven Goran Eriksson says he is optimistic that Wayne Rooney will play a part for England in the World Cup finals.

Team doctor Leif Sward said on Monday that the Manchester United striker was making a "perfect recovery" from his broken foot and a scan on Thursday will give Eriksson a better idea of how fit the 20-year-old will be when the World Cup begins on June 9.

"I know he is working very well," Eriksson said of Rooney. "We are in contact with him and the doctors and he's doing very well.

"So far everything is okay but let's wait until Thursday. "He will have a scan and after that we will hopefully know more or less when he will be ready.

Rooney is considered crucial to England's chances of success in Germany, but Eriksson said another striker on the road back to full fitness after injury, Michael Owen, has been impressive in training.

Owen, who has played just 30 minutes of top-flight action since breaking his foot on New Year's Eve, is set to start for England B in their friendly match against Belarus on Thursday.

"He is hungry, ready, and he was on fire in training at the start of last week," Eriksson said of Owen.

"We had four very good training sessions last week. The boys worked very hard and looked very

sharp. I remember four years ago and it was nothing like last week - this time it was much better.

"We tested them in Portugal and the results of those were very, very positive - much better than four years ago in Japan and two years ago in Portugal (at Euro 2004)."

Eriksson said 17-year-old Arsenal striker Theo Walcott, whom he picked for the squad despite never having seen him play a match and the fact that he has never played a top-flight game, will play some part against Belarus.

"You will see him on Thursday. Maybe not from the beginning but you will see him," the Swede said.

"He was quiet with us in the beginning but you can see he is a really great talent. He is very quick, has got a good touch and he scored a couple of goals in the last training session with us."

England begins their World Cup campaign against Paraguay on June 10.

(Source: BKP)

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