Johannesburg: England midfielder Steven Gerrard doesn`t want to take fire away from Wayne Rooney but wants the striker to show referees respect as questions continue to be raised over his temperament ahead of the football World Cup opener.
Gerrard insisted that Rooney is well aware of his responsibilities on the pitch and that England supporters need not fear a repeat.
“Discipline is very important. I`m not sure if Wayne will be targeted, we`ll see, but he is a very experienced player now. We need him on the pitch. Every player has been spoken to about discipline by the management,” Gerrard said.
“We`ve lost major players in the past to red cards so every player is aware that it`s up to them to ensure we have 11 men on the pitch.”
“You just don`t swear at the ref, simple as that. In this day you have to show the referee respect. It`s difficult enough playing 11 v 11, if we go a man down it`s just going to make it even tougher for us.”
“Wayne Rooney understands this. I don`t want to take his fire away from him, he always plays on the edge which is why he`s one of the best players in the world, but if he gets frustrated he knows he can`t take it out on the ref,” he said.