‘Raheem’s our Overmars’

Wayne Rooney reckons Raheem Sterling is just like former Holland winger Marc Overmars and has “incredible” potential.

The England captain revealed that he even showed videos of Overmars to the Liverpool forward ahead of this summer’s World Cup

Overmars won a hat full of honours, including the Eredivisie and Premier League titles and the Champions League during spells at Ajax, Arsenal and Barcelona between 1992 and 2004.

And Rooney believes the 19-year-old can be as good as the Dutchman, who also collected 86 caps for his country.

Switzerland v England

European Qualifier, Group E
7.45pm BST, Monday 8 September 2014
St Jakob Park, Basel
Watch live on ITV

“I sat down with Raheem before the World Cup and showed him videos of Marc Overmars because he reminds me of him,” said Rooney. 

“I think he has the potential to be as good as Overmars. He’s a young lad, but the potential he’s shown is incredible. 

“He’s a fantastic player. You saw that last season, and with the start he has had to this season. 

“He’s quite an unusual player. He can play right across the front line, out wide. Although he’s a small lad, he’s really strong as well. 

“He’ll be a massive player for England for the next ten to 15 years, and, unfortunately for Liverpool.” 

Marc Overmars v England in 2001

Marc Overmars in action against England in 2001

It was Sterling’s run that drew England’s match-winning penalty against Norway at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday, from which Rooney netted his 41st goal for his country. 

The strike took him one above his former international and Manchester United team-mate Michael Owen, and moved him closer to the all-time leader – England legend Sir Bobby Charlton. 

And at just 28 years old, and having already clocked up 96 appearances for the Three Lions, Rooney believes it’s only a matter of time before he breaks Charlton’s record of 49, which has stood for 44 years. 

He’s also got one eye on his Manchester United tally, which at 217 is only 32 behind Charlton’s. 

Afghan FA visits SGP

Owen and Rooney at St. George’s Park on Friday

“I spoke to Michael [Owen] at St George’s Park on Friday, and he wasn’t too pleased,” said Rooney, as he prepares for England’s opening Euro 2016 qualifier against Switzerland in Basel on Monday night. 

“I watched him as a boy growing up, so to go above him in the goal scoring charts is great. 

“And I’d be a fool if I didn’t look at Sir Bobby’s record and feel capable of passing him. It’s in my sights.” 

He added: “Both his records [for club and country] have stood for a long time, and a lot of players have attempted to break them. 

“Now they’re in touching distance, the two of them. It’s something I’d love to do. I feel I’m capable of doing it.”