United States captain Carlos Bocanegra praised his players for limiting the threat of Wayne Rooney during their 1-1 FIFA World Cup™ draw with England in Rustenburg.

Rooney was restricted to only a couple of opportunities throughout the 90 minutes as the USA concentrated on denying him space and the chance to run at their defenders.

The Manchester United star seldom got the better of centre-back pairing Oguchi Onyewu - playing his first competitive match for eight months after injury - and Jay DeMerit.

Former Fulham defender Bocanegra, who now plays for Rennes, said: "Oguchi had a great game and was a strong presence in the middle for us. I thought he and Jay had fantastic games and shut down Wayne Rooney most of the time.

It was a gritty team effort. That's how we play. We play scrappy, we play hard, we fight for 90 minutes in a big group effort

Carlos Bocanegra, United States captain.

"Jay did well to follow him into the midfield and we also had pressure applied by the midfielders coming back to close him down. The second half was a little bit more open and he got a few more chances to run at us. That's going to happen when we're a bit tired and space gets more open. But I thought overall we did well on Rooney.

DeMerit, who has just parted company with Watford, said: "Going into the game, if you let a player of Rooney's calibre turn and run at you, you are going to have a long day. We knew negating as much space as we could in front of him, so he couldn't do that, would give us the best chance."

Bocanegra was full of praise for his side's all-round performance even though it needed a mistake by England goalkeeper Robert Green to gift USA an equaliser.

He added: "It was a gritty team effort. That's how we play. We play scrappy, we play hard, we fight for 90 minutes in a big group effort. Our centre-halves were fantastic and Steve (Cherundolo) on the right did very well to shut down their speedy wingers.

"The forwards did well, the midfielders came in tight and ran over to cover for us. It was a really big team effort. That's something you need against a big team like England."