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Wayne Rooney expressed his sadness and support for “special person” Sven-Goran Eriksson after the former England manager revealed he has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

The Swede took charge of the English national team in 2001, leading them to the quarter-finals of the 2002 and 2006 World Cups as well as the final eight of Euro 2004.

Rooney burst onto the scene at the European Championship having been handed his international debut by Eriksson the previous year and was rocked by the news about his ex-boss.

“Sad news this morning,” the former England striker posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.

“Thoughts are with Sven Goran-Eriksson and his family. A brilliant coach and a special person. Loved and respected by everyone. We’re all with you Sven, keep fighting.”

Rooney’s 120-cap haul is second only to ex-England goalkeeper Peter Shilton, who never played under Eriksson but expressed similar sentiments.

“Very sad news to hear of Sven’s illness,” England’s appearance record holder said. “He’s a real gentleman and a great manager.”

The England national team’s X account said they are “sending our love, Sven”, while former clubs joined in expressing their best wishes to the Swede.

Manchester City said everyone at the club is thinking of Eriksson and “we wish to express our collective support to our former manager, and his family and friends, during this time”.

Leicester said “we are all with you, Sven” and Notts County posted that they are “sending love and strength to our former director of football, Sven-Goran Eriksson”.