Rooney might not play for England until next summer with Capello unlikely to pick him against Holland in February.
But when he does play it's unlikely to be in the new midfield role he's been temporarily handed at United.
"I think he can play there because he moves the ball quickly, straight to the goal. But I prefer to see Rooney close to the box," said Capello.
"He's dangerous. He can do assists and score goals. I spoke to him and asked him what he thought about the new position. He said he got a lot of passes - but I prefer him close to the box."