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What now for Wayne Rooney?

May 8, 2013, 6:35 PM EDT

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With Sir Alex Ferguson ready to call it a career, the Wayne Rooney saga will inevitably take a different turn than if the Scotsman were to stay on at Old Trafford.

It’s been a very up and down time for Rooney at Manchester United, coming over from Everton at just 18 years old with massive expectations due to both his price and his nationality.

That pressure has never alleviated, and continues to poke and prod Rooney as he meanders his career for both club and country.  News outlets constantly put out articles debating whether Rooney has been a valuable asset or an underperforming waste on the pitch, and even former managers have made comments urging him to improve his form.

United legend Sir Bobby Charlton said of Rooney this year, “I don’t know everything that happens at Manchester United but I know a little.  Wayne Rooney maybe has had an injury and has not performed as well as he might have done, but that doesn’t mean to say that you get rid of him.”  Hardly a statement of support for a striker who’s scored nearly 200 goals for the club.

However, now that his longtime manager is set to retire, what will Rooney do next? Many rumors are flying about his possible exit from Old Trafford.  Articles have suggested he could jump on the Bayern Munich bandwagon, or the overhaul at Stamford Bridge imminent this summer could swoop Rooney up.

Remember, people like to talk at a crossroads such as this.

It seems all too likely that his new boss at United will be his old one – David Moyes – who gave the striker his very first Premier League chance at Goodison Park back in 2002.  Will that have an impact on whether Rooney decides to stay?

Just tonight, chief soccer writer for The Guardian Daniel Taylor tweeted that Rooney has asked to leave but the request was turned down.  A few minutes later David McDonnell, a correspondent for The Mirror in Manchester, tweeted that United has indeed confirmed the rumor.

This season for Manchester United, Rooney’s made 27 appearances, 22 of those starts.  In Barclays Premier League matches which Rooney has scored or assisted a goal this year, United have 12 wins to 1 loss (92% win).  In league matches where Rooney did not start, United won 10, drew 1, and lost 3 (71% win).

What will befall the mercurial striker this summer? Through all the ups and downs, the Champions League and the Premier League, Wayne Rooney has been a talking point at Old Trafford for various reasons.  Will they talk about his departure or his loyalty after the dust settles on Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement?

  1. dfstell - May 8, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    I find this constant trashing of Rooney to be silly. He’s a fabulous player. Sure, he’s probably overpaid, but that’s another issue.

    I think his problem this season has been that he’s had a lot of nagging injuries and hasn’t been able to get fully into form. Now….the question is whether he’s at an age and weight where he’s just going to be injury prone for the rest of his career? If that’s the case, then it might be worth selling him for a price now rather than letting him deteriorate for another few years. Or, maybe he needs a change of scenery to get into better shape. I know he’s “a professional” but lots of people in all walks of life sometimes get sick of our current employment surroundings and want a different place. Rooney is at the age when men can’t stay thin just by exercising. All men over the age of 30 know what I’m talking about.

    Anyway…..I’m a United fan and I love watching the guy play. I’d love to see him lose 15 pounds and play for United for the rest of his career.

  2. mianfr - May 9, 2013 at 1:06 AM

    This completely ignores where he plays on the field… Obviously, the further you drop him back, the fewer goals he scores.

    I think he’s more or less as good as ever, he just hasn’t been able to provide the same impact since he’s been less of a striker and more of a midfielder.

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