Less than a year ago, Manchester United fans gave up on Wayne Rooney, it was a time when they agreed to push the player out of the club once he stated his desire to leave. The banners claimed: Club is bigger than player. A few days later, Sir Alex Ferguson convinced the player to extend his contract at the club and offered him a higher salary and more bonuses. In short, the player proved the opposite of what the fans said, player was bigger than club. Even today with Sir Alex gone, Wayne is proving yet again that he still is bigger than David Moyes’ side. He is the same man who once wore a ‘once a blue, always a blue’ shirt and then ditched Everton, the same man who asked to leave the club but then said he wants to stay as long as the club wants to keep him.
A new improved contract will tie the player down for a few more years but is Rooney worth £300,000 a week at the moment? It is completely absurd for a club to have to dig out a big amount of money to keep one of the players who have been at the club for 10 years! Loyalty has definitely gone and had it not been for such a lucrative contract then he would never think of staying at Manchester. The contract will last for about five and a half years, basically he will benefit from it until the age of 34. Even before signing the extension he was already the club’s highest paid player and after Juan Mata’s arrival for £37 million plus his hectic £120,000 a week salary, United may want to be careful with how they spend but they wanted to keep Rooney at all costs, or maybe they wanted to keep him away from Chelsea and Jose Mourinho, whatever it was, the cost of keeping him at the club will definitely make a hole in The Glazers’ pockets.
Rooney is not bad at all, he stands at 209 goals with only three players scoring more than him in the history of the club, the most being Bobby Charlton with 249, a record that he is highly likely to achieve if he sees out his contract at the club. Besides that, he has been influential at United this season despite their poor form, the man is playing well and the team can be shaped around him, Juan Mata and Adnan Januzaj. Now that United convinced him to stay, they can show any potential signing that they have the ability to sign stars and attract big names to the club, it shows that they have the money and the desire to be back at the top but it also means that the players can demand high wages and get it.
Rooney is certainly not producing magic for the money he is receiving, last night Manchester United lost in Greece and they seem destined to an early exit from the competition from a team (Olympiakos) who sold their best player (Mitroglou) to the Premier League’s worst outfit, Fulham. Rooney was invisible in the game, he is obviously expected to do more because he asked for a bigger role at the club, soon he will become the club captain and he needs to act like one and put his selfish desires aside. He shouldn’t be like Gorka Etxeberria and play for free but at least he should understand his clubs situation and try to let the focus be on other more important matters.
English players are viewed differently in the Premier League, they are either disregarded or glorified, some teams opt to sign foreign players even when they have English ones who match their talent or they glorify their Englishman and view him as the world’s best. To many, Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard are the best midfield duo in the world, but are they really? Rooney is not United’s only ever star player there were many before him but did Ryan Giggs for example hold the club to a ransom over money? If David Moyes loses Rooney then he loses his control over the dressing room and the club, so he probably thought that Wayne should be kept no matter what because if United are to return to compete for the title, they can only do it with him in the side, he is the man who can drive them forward, but if this is the cost to keep a world class player today, then it makes us wonder how much would the other teams go in the future to keep the likes of Gareth Bale, Neymar Junior, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and the rest.