WayneRooneySmilesIt would be a Bertie Ahern-sized 3D oversight (and God knows oversights don’t come bigger than Bertie’s) if I didn’t mention Manchester United’s magnificent performance against Arsenal at the Emirates on Sunday.

Whatever about Nani’s transformation, Wayne Rooney’s near-flawless form this season, even without the glut of goals he’s scoring, must make him the outstanding contender for the PFA player of the year award. Unlike Samson, the thinner his hair becomes the better he gets.

Having been revitalised by Ronaldo’s departure (and didn’t Fergie have a point when referring to Rooney’s unaffected nature while nudging in the direction of Madrid/Milan) he’s the only Wayne England can’t do without and is the main reason they can’t be discounted in South Africa, whatever the rooming arrangements.

The absence of a dependable ’keeper is one reason why they will probably fall short. Having once been touted as a potential repatriate, the Spaniard Manuel Almunia keeps begging the question as to why Arsene Wenger, or any number of other managers for that matter, didn’t go for Shay Given, who must make Fabio Capello green with envy.