Rooney wants to be Manchester United’s hero

After reading this piece from the Guardian, you might be tempted to brand Wayne Rooney as a greedy bastard whose success has gone to his head.

For people who will be surprised at the rumor that Rooney is asking for higher weekly wages than Ferdinand, here’s a question for you:

Why do you, or did you, think that Rooney was a loyal Manchester United fan?

I ask because there’s a mistaken belief in some circles that Rooney is at Old Trafford because he loves Manchester United.

On the contrary – Mr. Rooney is at Manchester United for one reason only – he wants to be a superstar.

No other club in England can give him that option. It’s almost irrelevant which clubs are interested in him – right now, Manchester United’s profile and the club’s current situation represents him with the perfect opportunity to stamp his name indelibly on to footballing history. In the years to come, Rooney will give his blood, sweat and tears to help Manchester United win titles, but ultimately the glory will be his – they will be Rooney’s titles as much as United’s.

This is not meant to be negative or as criticism of the player. He’s is an amazing football player and has few peers in the world today. If put on the market today, he would be more expensive than ANY other player in the Premiership, and that would be because of his talents and his young age (a combination that will serve Manchester United quite well for a long, long time).

However, Rooney is not stupid. He’s aware of his worth, and he’s remarkably practical for a 20-year old. He’s also selfish (which, again, is not a bad thing) and that’s where his ‘fire’ differs from Keano – Roy Keane played to win the game, Wayne Rooney plays to win for himself.

Now I seriously doubt that Rio Ferdinand is on the 110,000K weekly wages as Daniel Turner reports – he is, as are many others, relying on speculation. Does Rooney deserves as much as Rio Ferdinand? Definitely.

Henry, Sheva, Gerrard and Ballack are all on superstar wages. Terry wants to renegotiate his contract to get on that level. Ronaldo, assuming he stays, will want a new contract in the next 2 years.

Why shouldn’t Rooney (and for that matter, Ferdinand) be on the same list as well? They bloody-well deserve it, but only if you are comparing wages relative to what other clubs are paying. The wages Chelsea are willing to pay are pushing the costs of keeping your good players much higher.

Even then, there’s one thing that Chelsea can’t offer Rooney – the challenge of being the under-dog who topples the favorite, the challenge of being a hero.

Wayne Rooney gets to be a hero at Manchester United, and if he wants to be paid like one, who are you going to blame? Chelsea? Of course 🙂

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  1. SportSnob 4 September, 2006
  2. no13 12 September, 2006
  3. Karl 28 September, 2006
  4. justice 22 April, 2008