Manchester United and England star Wayne Rooney has backed friend Liam Smith to beat John Thompson for the WBO World Junior-Middleweight Title.

Unfortunately for the England captain, Saturday’s World Title double header at the Manchester Arena falls bang in between two European Championship qualifiers against Estonia and Lithuania.

“[Roy Hodgson] won’t let me take time out of England duty but I’ll certainly be watching it on television and I’m sure Liam will be at his best. I’m really looking forward to it,” said England’s all-time record goal scorer.

Rooney, who boxed as a youngster continued “I think John Thompson will be a difficult fight because he’s quite tall and is difficult to hit if you don’t get inside him. It will be tough but we believe that he can do it and bring a world title back to Liverpool”.

Watch our full exclusive interview with Wayne Rooney below: