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Allardyce backs striker to lead Everton revival

The Toffees boss thinks Wayne Rooney can go on for a while yet

Everton v Huddersfield Town - Premier League Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

Sam Allardyce insists Wayne Rooney’s recent form is no flash in the pan and has backed the former England captain be a key Everton player for years to come.

Rooney had a hand in all three Everton goals against Swansea on Monday, including a second half penalty that takes him to 10 Premier League goals already this season.

That puts the former England captain alongside the likes of Sergio Aguero and Romelu Lukaku in the goalscoring charts, confounding the critics who suggested he was finished as a top level player.

And Allardyce is confident the 32-year-old can maintain his form for a few years yet - provided he works hard to maintain his fitness.

Speaking to the official website, Allardyce said:

“Wayne can flourish as long as he wants with the talent he has got.

“As long as he looks after his body, better than he has ever done in his life now that he is in his 30s, then he can keep going at this level.

“He has the experience and the talent to go on for a good few years yet”

Rooney’s six goals in five games have helped the Toffees collect 13 points - one more than they had achieved in their previous 12 matches going back to the opening day of the season.

That has lifted the club away from danger and up to the dizzy heights of ninth place, a dramatic turnaround given the club sunk into the relegation zone just last month.

Allardyce is understandably delighted with the team’s revival under his tutelage - but has challenged them to maintain it.

“We are in the top half and that’s what I said I wanted so lets stay there.

“We have 13 points from the last 15 on offer and that is Champions League form.

“You come to a football club that is struggling and it takes you a bit of time [to turn things around]. But the lads here have switched on, listened and gone out and won. All credit to them because it is their responsibility to go out and win, and they are doing that.

“It’s making everybody happy leading up to Christmas.”