<figure> <img src="https://cdni.rt.com/files/2018.11/article/5bede81edda4c80d208b4603.jpg"> <figcaption>Marc Atkins / <span class="copyright">Getty Images</span></figcaption> </figure> <strong>England's all-time highest goalscorer Wayne Rooney took his final touch in a Three Lions shirt on Thursday, and there wasn't a dry eye at Wembley, as the legendary striker brought the curtain down on his 120-cap, 53-goal career.</strong> Rooney came out of retirement to win the final of those 120 in a friendly against USA, incidentally the country in which he currently plies his trade for DC United in the MLS.
Before kick off, the former England captain was presented with a commemorative plaque by the current England skipper Harry Kane, which he received with his four sons on the Wembley turf.
Kane had previously confirmed Rooney would wear the number 10 shirt and captain’s armband as a mark of respect to the most prolific striker in English history.
Rooney began the game, which also was aimed at raising funds for the Wayne Rooney Foundation, which “aims to inspire and improve the lives of children and young people”, on the bench as his introduction was pre-arranged for the second half.
The former Man United and Everton center forward came on as a 58th-minute substitute for Jesse Lingard, his former teammate at Old Trafford, where Rooney also became top scorer.
When Rooney did take to the field, the 33-year old was greeted with a standing ovation from the England crowd, and immediately given the captain’s armband, worn from the kick off by Fabian Delph.
In the match, England went 2-0 up within half an hour, with a brace coming in the space of a few minutes courtesy of a Lingard opener on 25 minutes and then Trent Alexander-Arnold doubling the lead in double quick time, to make sure the home side went into the break ahead.
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The third was a case of the new generation emerging from the old, as debutant Callum Wilson poked home to make it 3-0 on 77 minutes and was substituted immediately after. Already with a 100% scoring record, it remains to be seen whether Wilson will break Rooney’s formidable record.
Sadly, the man of the moment didn’t add to his already impressive tally, instead enjoying just over half an hour of being, for the last time, and England player. Rooney wasn’t entirely bereft of chances, including a cleverly worked shot inside the area in stoppage time that was saved by keeper Brad Guzan.
With the final whistle not long after, Rooney brought the final curtain down on an international career spanning a hat-trick of World Cups that began 15 years ago as a 17-year-old against Australia in 2003, and ended with the highest goal tally of any Englishman to lace up boots.