Rooney must play where he's told to play - Venables

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The former England boss insists that the Three Lions skipper should play whichever positions suits the needs of his manager for both club and country

Former England boss Terry Venables has told Goal that Wayne Rooney should get used to being played wherever he is asked to play.

Rooney has been employed in midfield of late for Manchester United, most recently in Tuesday’s 3-1 victory over Bournemouth in the Premier League, but has admitted that he expects England coach Roy Hodgson to pick him in attack ahead of this summer’s Euro 2016 finals.

But as Rooney gears up for Saturday’s FA Cup final against Crystal Palace, Venables has insisted that all players must use their flexibility as required to suit their managers’ needs.


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“It depends how the manager decides he’s going to play him. It’s no good saying ‘Well I want to do this, I’m this player’, you’ve got to be a bit more flexible,” said Venables, speaking at the The Three Lions pub launching Carlsberg’s ‘Pubstitutions’ campaign.

“The interchange of positions is very important, standing-still football is for Subbuteo.”

Palace head into the showpiece occasion at Wembley as underdogs having struggled for form in the Premier League since the turn of the year, but Venables – a two-time manager of the Eagles – insists that Alan Pardew’s men have every chance of lifting the cup for the first time in their history.

“I think they can do it, yes, especially with the way things are. I think that it’s going to be a really top game,” insisted Venables.

“Pardew has done a great job, but you’ve got to see out the whole thing. It’s a marathon, but I think he’s done very well.”

For many, the lustre of the FA Cup final has begun to fade in recent years, but the 73-year-old former Tottenham and Barcelona boss insists that it remains a huge occasion in the English football calendar.

“The FA Cup should still be coveted, for me. It is our heritage really, it was the same for your parents and grandparents too, and you want it to stay.

“You used to come out from the back of the goal at Wembley as well, which was brilliant. I remember me and Brian Clough going there in 1991 [between Tottenham and Nottingham Forest] and we were holding hands coming out in front of the teams! That’s been lost, and it’s a bit of a shame for me because it’s just a normal stadium now.

“When I was at Barcelona we had a Clasico on FA Cup final day and we had to fly to Madrid to play, and our team said ‘Can we watch the English cup final before we go?’ They used to say ‘Why are they walking out from the back of the goal’ but it was about the goosebumps. That’s the history involved in the cup final.”

The Wembley final, a repeat of the 1990 match-up between Palace and United, kicks off at 17:30 BST on Saturday.

Terry Venables met England fans at The Three Lions pub in London as part of Carlsberg’s ‘Pubstitutions' campaign. Carlsberg will be substituting pub names and renaming them ‘The Three Lions’ across England in the build-up to UEFA EURO 2016™.

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