MX23RW : Saturday, September 22 00:21:27

Rio Ferdinand: 'Captaincy can take Wayne Rooney to next level'

Rio Ferdinand insists that being captain for Manchester United and England can take Wayne Rooney to a new level.

Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has claimed that being captain for club and country can take Wayne Rooney to a new level.

Louis van Gaal decided to name Rooney his captain in the summer, shortly before he took the armband from Steven Gerrard for England, and Ferdinand believes that his ex-teammate needed the extra responsibility at this stage of his career.

"Wayne's record demanded that he wears the Manchester United armband," the Queens Park Rangers centre-back told the Manchester Evening News. "He deserves it.

"Wayne has things to reach for still and the captaincy is another responsibility that will help him to get to those landmarks quicker.

"I think he needed it now. I have known what it is like to be at a club for a long time like Wayne and you need those little extras, that extra lift or kick on to push on again. I think it was something he was going to need over the coming years."

Rooney scored his 43rd goal for England in the 1-0 victory over Estonia on Sunday.

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England's coach Roy Hodgson walks off the pitch following the game against Estonia during a UEFA 2016 European Championship qualifying group E football match between England and Estonia in Tallinn, Estonia, on October 12, 2014
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