England's Wayne Rooney 'deserves' international recall - Michael Keane

Everton's Michael Keane says his teammate Wayne Rooney is enjoying a new lease of life and deserves a recall to the England squad.

England's record goal scorer netted his 200th Premier League goal -- becoming only the second player to reach that landmark -- in Everton's 1-1 draw at Manchester City on Monday.

The goal was also Rooney's second in two league appearances since re-joining his boyhood club from Manchester United, raising calls for him to make a return for England.

The Telegraph has reported that England manager Gareth Southgate will check the fitness of his other options before recalling Rooney, but Keane has been impressed by his workrate.

The defender said: "You see it more so than ever. He wants to do really well for this club. He wants to help us win something. Until that happens he won't be resting.

"He has been fantastic since day one. He is a leader in the dressing room, he has worked really hard on his fitness and it is showing in the games.

"Obviously [it's] two goals in two games now and hopefully it will be a lot more. He has shown his quality as well as his leadership skills."

Rooney was dropped by Southgate last season as he struggled to command a regular place during his final campaign at United.

Keane hopes to see him return as Southgate prepares to name his squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Malta and Slovakia on Thursday.

"Personally I think he deserves it the way he has been playing but that is up to the manager," he added. "There are a lot of good strikers who have been scoring goals so it is his decision."

Keane is also hoping he has done enough to catch Southgate's eye since joining Everton from Burnley in the summer.

The 24-year-old, who won two caps last season, said: "I think we both have a good chance. There are a lot of good centre-halves out there at the minute. I am not taking anything for granted but hopefully I will be under consideration."

Phil Jagielka says Rooney's performances have sent a strong answer to his critics.

Jagielka, also a long-time England teammate, said: "Wayne and his teammates never doubt him, so I am not sure why people would doubt him.

"He has proven when he is given a chance to play a number of games, he normally scores a number of goals, so his record for his country and his teams has been second to none.

"And so far for us, in preseason and in the league and in our brief European stint, he has been one of our best players and hopefully that will continue.

"If England comes knocking, obviously he is younger than me and he has more goals to go for, so I am sure he will be happy. If not, we would be delighted he gets a rest and is ready to go for us."

Sir Geoff Hurst said earlier he believes Southgate should officially call time on Rooney's international career, but Gary Lineker believes Rooney has proven himself one of the true "greats of English football" after scoring his 200th Premier League goal.

"He's been a great player for English football," former England international Lineker said. "He'd be [one of Britain's] top 10 [ever]. He's had a marvellous career. He's been slightly unfortunate that he's been our only world-class player for quite a while after the Golden Generation disappeared.

"We went through a time of being bereft of world-class talent: it was just him. He's gone to play in tournaments, sometimes not fully fit, sometimes fit, in a team that's not really good enough, and he's suffered a little bit from that.

"He probably is [under-appreciated]. Those of us who remember his early career when he was phenomenal: well, he did it [at Euro 2004] in Portugal. When he got injured: we might have gone on to win that one if he hadn't, we were looking so good.

"He's not played in terribly strong England sides subsequently. But he's scored more goals than anyone else for England, anyone else for Manchester United, and that in itself is a phenomenal achievement."

The loss of Rooney's pace had contributed much to that of his first-team place at United and squad place with England, but the intelligence showed so far in his return to Everton suggests he can excel without.

Lineker suspects he slowed down because of his exceptional work-rate, and said: "If I had one criticism, it's probably that he worked too hard and chased back too much, which has probably been one of the reasons why he's gradually slowed down but that was for the right reasons: he's doing that because he's so honest.

"He's been a wonderful player in our game: everyone gets a bit under-appreciated because we are a judgemental society but it's also very tribal, football. If he's playing for Manchester United, automatically a lot of people would dislike him, so you've got to look a little bit above that."