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England v Belarus

Rooney withdraws from England squad

October 11, 2009
By Soccernet staff

England striker Wayne Rooney will miss Wednesday night's World Cup qualifier with Belarus because of a calf injury.

GettyImagesFabio Capello and United striker Wayne Rooney.

• Foster gets England call

The Manchester United forward picked up the injury during Saturday's 1-0 defeat away to Ukraine in the Dnipro Stadium and has withdrawn from the England squad.

After having the injury assessed at the Three Lions' training base in Hertfordshire, he has been sent back to Old Trafford for treatment. Rooney will now face a race to be fit for United's Premier League encounter with Bolton.

Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard will remain with the England squad after having his groin injury assessed. Gerrard only lasted until half-time in Ukraine.

Unless injury hits one of his other four strikers, Capello is unlikely to call in a replacement for Rooney.

The Italian has the option of pushing Gerrard into a more advanced position, which he plays in so successfully for Liverpool.

Alternatively, he could pair Carlton Cole with Emile Heskey, or possibly Aston Villa's Gabriel Agbonlahor, who was an unused substitute on Saturday.