England’s fixture against USA is to be called The Wayne Rooney Foundation International in support of the legend’s charitable interests.
Manager Gareth Southgate will also name the 33-year-old in his squad to face the Americans at Wembley Stadium on Thursday 15 November (8pm kick-off).
Rooney, who joined DC United earlier this year, officially retired from international duty in August 2017 as his country’s record goalscorer and having amassed more caps than any other male outfield player.
Following this FA initiative, the Wembley crowd will now get the chance to show their appreciation for one of England’s greats as the curtain comes down on a glittering Three Lions career that spanned three FIFA World Cups and three UEFA European Championships.
The Wayne Rooney Foundation concentrates its efforts on improving the lives of disadvantaged children. Due to serious illness, poverty or abuse, many of these young people simply do not get the opportunity to dream, let alone achieve their ambitions.
Fundraising initiatives around the game will allow fans to support the Foundation’s work, including donations via BT MyDonate and a Gala Dinner at Wembley Stadium in 2019.
The Foundation has supported a number of good causes close to Wayne’s heart, including the NSPCC, Alder Hey Children’s Hospital and Claire House Children’s Hospice. A significant donation was also made to the young people affected by the Manchester Arena bombing in 2017.
Rooney said: “I am truly humbled and hugely excited to play for England at Wembley again. I would like to thank Gareth Southgate and The FA for inviting me back and helping to support my Foundation in the process.
“Playing for England was the greatest honour of my career – so winning my 120th, and final, cap will be a particularly special moment for me. It’s fitting that the match will be against the USA and I hope that both sets of fans enjoy the game.
Southgate said: “The connection between The FA and former England players is something that has always been very important to me. Acknowledging the Three Lions legacy has been a major part of our journey with this current group of young players and Wayne Rooney is a hugely significant part of that history.
“This tribute to Wayne is a unique opportunity that is befitting of our nation’s record goalscorer. We’re fortunate that circumstances have allowed us to formally acknowledge Wayne’s immense contribution to England in front of the Wembley crowd and against apt opponents given the recent impact he has made in the MLS.
“We all look forward to the occasion and lending support to a number of good causes through the Wayne Rooney Foundation.”
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