Capello happy with hot-tempered Rooney

LONDON COLNEY - Wayne Rooney is a hugely important member of the England squad and coach Fabio Capello has no intention of telling the striker to curb his temper, the Italian said on Friday.

Rooney, 23, was sent off playing for Manchester United against Fulham last week for two yellow cards. He received the second for throwing the ball back in the direction of the referee before punching the corner flag on his way off the field.

Capello, who jokingly called Rooney "a crazy man" this week, told a news conference before England's friendly international against Slovakia on Saturday that although Rooney's reaction on the field was not always the best, he hoped the player would have a long future with England.

"He is still very young," said Capello, "and sometimes his reaction is not so good, but he's a good player, a good man.

"When he get sent off last week, he was a little bit angry, they were losing - but there is no problem for Rooney in the future with England.

"I did call him a crazy man, it was a joke and he understood that - but he is very important to us and I hope that he gets the right balance of aggression in the future," Capello said.

"You need to be a little aggressive during a game, but you have to have the right balance of aggression. To get the best out of Wayne Rooney you do not need to control his temper.

"I was a player too and sometimes during a game it is impossible to check your temper."

England captain John Terry echoed Capello's words when he said: "I think some players are born with that passion and fire inside their belly and Wayne certainly has that and we don't want to take that away from him. He's a world class player who should just be allowed to get on with his football."

Rooney became England's youngest player at the age of 17 years 111 days when he made his international debut in February 2003.

That record was superseded by Theo Walcott in May 2006, but Rooney has since gone on to fulfil his early promise and should win his 49th cap against Slovakia on Saturday after missing England's last two matches with injury.

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