The England National Team's Wayne Rooney era appears to be drawing to a close after interim manager Gareth Southgate announced the captain would be dropped against Slovenia.
After a performance from Rooney against Malta that involved a lot of standing around and not very much doing things, Southgate must have felt he had no choice in the matter, even though Sam Allardyce and Roy Hodgson had been cowed into keeping Rooney in their respective England teams. Southgate appears to have followed the example set by Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho in dropping the player.
Southgate told the press Monday that Rooney would therefore not play against Slovenia.
Here's the vital exchange:
"Yeah it's straight forward. We've looked at Slovenia and how they play and when I looked at them I looked at what we needed for this game.
"It's no way a reflection on Wayne and how he played on Saturday. He played very well, showed good tactictal discipline.
"We spoke yesterday at length. Not only did he accept the news with great professionalism, and he was keen to speak today. I didn't feel he should but it's a reflection of the man."
Does Rooney still have a future?
"He is still captain of the team while I'm in charge. "
Who will be captain?
We'll have more on this "Jordan Henderson as captain of England" thing later, but this is a major development, and probably the first step in Rooney's eventual journey to MLS.
Contact The18 Staff Writer Sam Klomhaus at Klomhaus@The18.com or follow him on Twitter @SamKlomhaus