Thursday 12th June, 2014

Ross Barkley has shades of Wayne Rooney and would scare Italy on Saturday if picked by England boss Roy Hodgson, Manchester United legend Paul Scholes believes.

The Everton midfielder has been included in Hodgson's World Cup squad, but it is far from clear whether the former Liverpool manager will give him the vote to face Italy in Manaus.

For Scholes, who watched Barkley play against Ecuador, Barkley simply must start and England adopt an attacking approach.

"I was watching the England vs Ecuador friendly in an airport lounge, a bit back from the screen. In the first-half Barkley went on a run and I thought, ‘Bloody hell, is that Rooney?’", he wrote on his Paddy Power blog.

"Barkley made me think of Wayne at Euro 2004.


"I had to take a second look because I thought it was Wayne."

And Scholes has urged an ultra-attacking approach against the Italians.

"Hodgson has little to lose by going for the jugular in Rio. Will we be satisfied if England scrape through to the quarter-finals playing negative football?

"Let’s not do that and instead take responsibility for what happens if we go for it.

"Let these England players off the leash."

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