Sir Geoff Hurst has described Wayne Rooney as “a true great” but says there is a “way to go” before he can justify Bobby Charlton comparisons.
Rooney has reached 48 goals for England, one short of Charlton’s all-time record but with a great chance to overtake it in the next week in the Euro 2016 qualifiers against San Marino and Switzerland.
Hurst, however, has pointed out that Charlton scored his goals without playing as an out-and-out striker.
“Rooney’s a true great,” said Hurst, who scored a hat-trick in the 1966 World Cup final win over Germany.
“But there is a little way to go, when you make comparisons as players.”
“Figure-wise, of course, if he goes above him it’s a great achievement, no question at all,” added Hurst.
“The only thing I would say is if you’re making comparisons, Wayne is a front player, whereas Bobby Charlton scored 49 goals as a midfield player.
“It just shows you the astonishing ability of Sir Robert Charlton.
“It’s not only their ability, it’s what they achieved in the game, and of course Bobby Charlton was the member of a World Cup winning team, which Wayne’s not yet. There’s that differential there, which I would always argue.”