Rooney blames Pep for Foden’s Euro 2020 struggles

Carlo Garganese

Wayne Rooney has blamed Pep Guardiola for Phil Foden’s disappointing start to Euro 2020.

Foden started both of England’s Group D games at Wembley, as the Three Lions edged out Croatia 1-0 before drawing 0-0 with Scotland.

How has Foden performed at Euro 2020?

But like most of England’s attacking players, Foden has struggled to shine so far.

He hit the post early on in the win over Croatia but has otherwise made little impact.

This is a far cry from his form for Manchester City where he registered an impressive 15 goals and 12 assists in all competitions last season.

But Rooney says that the reason Foden is labouring is because England play in a way that is completely alien to the football he has ever experienced at City.

Rooney criticised Guardiola for Foden struggles

And Rooney blames Guardiola for not allowing Foden to go away on loan in order to experience a different environment.

"I love Foden as a footballer but you have to realise that, for four years and more, he has been moulded into a City player,” Rooney told The Times.

"Pep Guardiola did not let him go on loan, or experience a different style of football - his whole adult career has been spent playing the Guardiola/City way.

"Pep Guardiola did not let him go on loan, or experience a different style of football - his whole adult career has been spent playing the Guardiola/City way.

"It is hard for him to turn up and just change how he has been playing since the age of 16."][]}

"It is hard for him to turn up and just change how he has been playing since the age of 16. City play in the final third. They keep possession there. Foden is not a dribbler but a player who plays nice little passes and moves into good positions.

"At City, the movement of players around him enables it. City will play quick five-yard passes before a little movement - not a big one - will free Foden up and he has licence to go into the spaces and play as a No 9, at times, or No 10 at others.

"Whereas with England he is a bit isolated out wide and when he receives the ball, the possession is slow and there is little happening around him. That means he then has to dribble - and if you are playing in such a way that, from your wide players, dribbling is what is required, then why not play Grealish and Jadon Sancho, two of the best at doing it."

England are almost certain of qualification for the knockouts of Euro 2020 but they need to beat Czech Republic on Tuesday in order to finish top of Group D.