Manchester United legend Wayne Rooney will wear the England shirt again in September as he plays in Soccer Aid for UNICEF.
Rooney hung up his boots earlier this year after being appointed manager of Derby County in January.
The 35-year-old has endured a difficult five months in the managerial hot-seat, winning on just seven of 24 games since being appointed on a permanent basis as the Rams narrowly escaped relegation on the final day of the season.
Rooney managed the England side in Soccer Aid for UNICEF 2020 but will be donning the famous Three Lions shirt again in September Soccer Aid for UNICEF at the Etihad Stadium.
England’s all-time leading goalscorer will join former United teammates Gary Neville and Paul Scholes, as well as ex-City defender Micah Richards who was also announced today as taking part in Soccer Aid for UNICEF 2021.
Rooney admitted he enjoyed managing in the charity affair last year but it only made him more eager to play again.
“Pulling on an England shirt is always special, so I’m absolutely delighted to be doing that again in Soccer Aid for UNICEF this September”, he said.
“Managing the England team last year was great but being around the players made me want to lace up the boots again – now I’ve got that chance, one last time.
“Soccer Aid for UNICEF has been a massive force for good since it started back in 2006 and I know the public will support us again this year by purchasing tickets, which are now on sale.”
Football stars due to take part include Kelly Smith, Roberto Carlos, Patrice Evra, David James, Ashley Cole, Emile Heskey and Jamie Redknapp. Harry Redknapp returns as manager of the Soccer Aid World XI FC, while Micah Richards joins the England coaching team with David Seaman as goalkeeping coach.
Former United captain Gary Neville urged football fans to buy a ticket for the game.
“Just when I thought my days of being booed by City fans had passed! I’m hoping that my hamstrings hold out for more than five minutes, to be honest,” Neville joked.
“Also, I need to get through the next few months without Micah Richards sounding-off in my ear too much! All joking aside, we’re all playing for a hugely important cause – UNICEF.
“Their work is as important now as it has ever been, so please buy a ticket and come along – it will be great fun.”
Micah Richards said: “Usain Bolt running at Gary Neville? Rooney out of retirement? Me making my coaching debut. What more do you want?! This is going to be so good! I can’t wait to see all the lads run out at The Etihad for such a great cause. The line-up is looking really strong and let me tell you – there are even more surprises to come!”
Celebrity names announced include James Arthur, Tom Grennan, Olly Murs, Mark Wright, Paddy McGuinness, Ore Oduba, Kem Cetinay, Liv Cooke, Roman Kemp, Chunkz and Maya Jama as a pundit.
- Tickets for the game on Saturday September 4 are on sale now via www.socceraid.org.uk/tickets with a family of four able to attend for £60 – two adults and two children. It will also be broadcast live on ITV.