England and Manchester United’s record goalscorer Wayne Rooney says he should have scored more goals despite not being a “natural” finisher.
Rooney scored 253 times to break Sir Bobby Charlton’s all-time record at United, before also surpassing the latter’s England tally with 53.
Writing in his Sunday Times column, the 34-year-old said: “This might surprise you, but I’m not a natural goalscorer.
“I was never a Gary Lineker or a Ruud van Nistelrooy.”
After bursting onto the scene with boyhood club Everton at 16, Rooney moved to Old Trafford in 2004, and made 559 appearances for the Red Devils.
He also won 120 caps for his country.
|Wayne Rooney’s all-time record|
|Team||Goals||Appearances||Goals per game|
|Everton (April 2002-August 2004)||17||77||0.22|
|Man Utd (August 2004-July 2017)||253||559||0.45|
|Everton (July 2017-June 2018)||11||40||0.28|
|DC United (June 2018-January 2020)||23||49||0.47|
|Derby County (January 2020-)||4||15||0.27|
|England (February 2003-November 2018)||53||120||0.44|
“I hold the goal records for Manchester United and England and I’m very proud about that – yet there have been better number nines than me,” he added.
“How did I become a record-breaker if I wasn’t a natural scorer? Time.
“I played for United for 13 years, England for 15 years. I had time to break those records – and looking back I should have scored more.”
Rooney, now Derby County player-coach, believes Harry Kane will set a new benchmark for the Three Lions.
“I don’t think it will take long for Harry Kane to claim my England record and it would be a proud moment for me,” he added.
“If I were building a team, he is the one I’d start with.
“I’ve never been a selfish player and it would be great for England for Harry to get there. Bobby Charlton had to wait 50 years – I hope it’s not so long for me.
“The United record might last longer simply because players don’t stay at clubs as long as they used to. Mind you, if Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo came to Old Trafford for a swansong they would probably break it in three or four years.”