Rooney scored a 13th minute penalty against San Marino on Saturday to ensure he will go down in the history books as at least England’s joint top goalscorer.
The 29-year-old has a chance to break the record when England face Switzerland at Wembley on Tuesday night.
Mata was impressed by Rooney’s achievement and was quick to praise his Man United teammate on his personal blog.
“Wayne is one of the best players I’ve ever had as a team-mate, and I’m sure he’s going to set a record very difficult to beat in the future.”
Despite many people being divided in opinion over Rooney, there is no doubting that equalling the all-time scoring record for your country is a sensational achievement and one that will put him amongst the likes of Bobby Charlton and Gary Lineker in years to come.
What Rooney must now do is try and replicate his international form for United. Many critics have suggested that the 29-year-old is past his best and not good enough to lead the line for his club. United will need a Rooney who is firing on all cylinders as it could be pivotal in any potential title race.