|Rooney: Image Credit Supersports.com|
Wayne Rooney may have been staunchly defended by England coach Roy Hodgson after the opening 2-1 defeat by Italy in the World Cup, but his performance attracted criticism from former top players and coaches.
Some like former England coach Graham Taylor made allowances for him being played out of position wide on the left by Hodgson while others were less charitable with former England midfielder Alan Mullery calling for the 28-year-old to be dropped.
Mullery echoed comments made by Rooney's former Manchester United team-mate Paul Scholes, who before the World Cup had queried whether he had already peaked and faced a struggle to get into the first team.
The main criticism of Rooney's performance revolved not around his play going forward, as he created England's best chances and had three shots at goal -- the most along with Raheem Sterling -- but how he often left Leighton Baines exposed at the back.