Wayne Rooney says Man City manager Pep Guardiola is helping England’s young players and making the national team better as a result.
Manchester City are clearly reaping the benefits of Pep Guardiola’s management, but England’s record goalscorer Wayne Rooney believes the national team are performing better with the Spaniard in the Premier League.
Since arriving at City in 2016, Guardiola has transformed the club into a record-breaking, title-winning side that plays a style of football never seen before in England.
While City rely on a squad consisting of players from around the world, Guardiola has insisted on an English core of players that are integral to City’s success.
Between them John Stones, Kyle Walker, Raheem Sterling and Fabian Delph played over 150 times last season as City won the Premier League and League Cup.
The quartet also played a big part in England’s journey to the World Cup semi-finals in the summer, and Rooney believes Guardiola has had a big part to play in the Three Lions’ success in Russia compared to the disappointing performances in tournaments he played in.
Rooney is making his 120th and final England cap on Thursday night, and he told Sky Sports: “As a team I think we were unlucky on a couple of occasions, on penalties, but I think we could have done better.
“Maybe if we had those players in this era, when there does seem to be a lot more coaching, a lot more intelligence in terms of how the teams are prepared and set up, I think a lot of coaches, the likes of Guardiola and Klopp coming into the Premier League, are helping a lot of our young players.
“I know there is a debate over foreign managers in the Premier League but I believe what they’re doing for the likes of Raheem Sterling, Kyle Walker, players like that, has given them a massive amount of knowledge of how to play the game.
“It’s my turn to go and watch as a fan now and try to enjoy it that way.”