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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 1, 2006

Eriksson to give Rooney every chance for finals

England boss Sven-Goran Eriksson will spend part of today on the phone to the England medical staff checking on the progress of injured Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney.

Eriksson plans to take Rooney, who broke the fourth metatarsal bone in his right foot during the 3-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge which confirmed Chelseas as Premiership champions, to the World Cup finals in Germany next month if the striker is fit enough to play at some stage.

Eriksson spent yesterday talking to the England doctor and plans to have Rooney in the squad if the player can recover in time.

Rooney looks certain to be in the England squad when Eriksson announces his initial selection next week ahead of the finals which begin in Germany on June 9.

United expect Rooney to be out for six weeks which would run to the date of England's first group game of the World Cup finals against Paraguay.

'If we think that at some stage he could take part in the World Cup then I will pick him,' said Eriksson.

'It's too early to know if he is going to have a chance to be fit or not,' Eriksson added on Sky Sports News.

'If we think he has a chance to play in the World Cup then I will pick him. I think it's a hope for all England fans as well, we're talking about Wayne Rooney.

'I think we have to look at that closer to the World Cup. I hope the World Cup is not over for Rooney, I really hope so for him and for the England fans and everyone.

'We will have regular contact with the Manchester United medical staff in the coming week.'

Eriksson added: 'During the last 24 hours I talked to my doctor 10 times.

'I don't want to rule Wayne Rooney out of the World Cup until they tell me there is no chance he can take part in it.'

Eriksson is optimistic Rooney's fellow striker Michael Owen will be fit after Newcastle's former Liverpool and Real Madrid forward made his return in the 0-0 draw with Birmingham after four months out with a broken fifth metatarsal.

Eriksson said of Owen: 'He is very optimistic that he will be fit to play. Even if Rooney were fit it is important that Michael Owen were fit.

'We were unlucky with Michael Owen, and even more Wayne Rooney that they were injured like this. I am sorry for Manchester United as well.'

Eriksson revealed there was no problem with the injury John Terry picked up against United.

'The latest is that it shouldn't be any problem at all, and that's good news,' added Eriksson.

And there was also some positive news from Ledley King, who is recovering well from breaking the fourth metatarsal on his left foot.

Speaking after yesterday's 1-0 win over Bolton, the Tottenham defender said: 'It's not feeling too bad at the moment so I have fingers crossed.

'I have been out for two weeks now and hopefully in another two weeks it will have healed completely and I can start thinking about the World Cup again.'