LJUBLJANA, Oct 10 (Reuters) - England captain Wayne Rooney has been dropped for Tuesday’s World Cup Group F qualifier in Slovenia for tactical reasons, manager Gareth Southgate told a news conference on Monday.
Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson will wear the skipper’s armband with Rooney watching from the bench in Ljubljana.
“It’s very straightforward really, we have looked at Slovenia and the way they play and from midway through last week I had in mind the profile of the midfield that I wanted to play and what was needed for this game,” Southgate said.
“In no way is it a reflection on Wayne’s performance on Saturday (against Malta), in fact we were very pleased with what he did.”
Rooney was booed by a small minority of England fans late on in the 2-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Malta at Wembley.
The Manchester United forward is England’s most capped outfield player, with 117 appearances, and all-time top goalscorer but his recent form has been indifferent.
He has scored just once in 12 games in all competitions this season and only once in the last seven internationals.
Rooney said: ”It’s football. He (Southgate) has got 23 players to select form.
“I’ve played 13 years non-stop for England and given everything and the time comes when you are not the first name on the team sheet. It is a chance for other players.” (Reporting by Martyn Herman in London; Editing by Ken Ferris)