Manchester United legend Sir Alex Ferguson “threatened to kill” Sven Goran Eriksson verbally, according to claims made by the former England manager. Ferguson was known to be a tough operator and a formidable character during his 26-and-a-half years in charge at Old Trafford.
Eriksson and Ferguson would regularly have dealings as United players littered the England squad during the Swede’s reign.
Eriksson was in charge of the England team from January 2001 until July 2006 and oversaw the Three Lions at three major tournaments.
Under, the 74-year-old, England had no problems qualifying for the World Cups in 2002 and 2006 and the European Championships in 2004.
But the team were knocked out at the quarter-final stages of each competition as the so-called golden generation, which included the likes of David Beckham, Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney failed to live up to expectations.
Ahead of the 2006 World Cup, Rooney had suffered a foot injury with the Red Devils and was a doubt for the tournament.
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Rooney had scored 19 goals for the Red Devils in all competitions during the 2005/06 season but missed the final two Premier League matches after being forced off in his side’s 3-0 defeat to Chelsea at the end of April as the Blues stormed to the title.
“I don’t think he thought a second about the World Cup before he went onto the pitch at Stamford Bridge,” Eriksson added.
Rooney ultimately returned in time for the World Cup in Germany but missed the opening game against Paraguay, before coming on as a substitute in the second match against Trinidad & Tobago.
But he struggled to hit his top form and didn’t find the back of the net once in the competition.
And his tournament ended in misery after he was sent off against Portugal as the Three Lions went crashing out following a penalty shootout.
“I remember thinking it’s my first World Cup – how can I not try to be there,” Rooney said on the documentary. “I did everything I could – I was back and forth seeing specialists.”
Rooney was a mainstay in the England side for another decade after that World Cup and ended his international career as his country’s highest ever scorer after bagging 53 goals in 120 appearances.
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