Sometimes your greatness is well defined by a moment. But for such a great name as Rooney no doubt he is such a legend in the game. With 53 goals in his name, he is the best England team has ever produced.
It is no debatable sometimes that was things iconic for him. He was a mere 18-year-old lad when he kicked off the ball for England and became the youngest one to do so. At Euro 2004 when the very sight of him tearing so ferociously up the pitch seemed to cause utter panic and chaos in the French defense.
It was like the world came to know a beast has arrived. People could see how his game was developing each day and what giant he was growing into. But has he been a legend or played to his potential? Some might say that his goals speak for that.
He himself said, “One of my very few regrets is not to have been part of a successful England tournament side.” You could extend to say that, beyond 2004, he never really had a successful individual tournament for England either.
He is one of the most underrated players ever. With the club games crippling in it became tough for the man to come up and thus the retirement must be a bliss. He was recovering from injury for 2006 and 2010, suffered from one of football’s fundamentals in bad management in 2008 and 2014, and then missed half of 2012 through a red card.
His England career is largely defined by effortlessly efficient goals against the medium-level opposition, rather than the great historic moments he would have been capable of. That is the problem why no iconic scenes flash by.
His moments were snatched in 2006 World Cup, England shattered! What could have been if he had played? Would have been an iconic moment for him, a lifetime achievement. Just defines the fact that though he has so many goals by his name not a single moment exist that can define him better.
It’s again not a criticism for Wazza, neither his fault, just a misfortune and a matter of chance. He himself said the only thing he regrets in life is not winning a silverware for his team.
But still, he will be missed a lot and remains to be one of the crafted legends of the game.