England faces Hodgson’s choice over Rooney role

Wayne Rooney, Daniel Sturridge

Wayne Rooney has so often been the subject of debate. England’s best hope and bête noire, sometimes in equal measure, in the decade since the Scouser’s international début in February 2003. Rooney’s electric performances in the following summer’s European Championships earned a £30 million move to Manchester United – the start of a period that […]

Data Rant: Rooney in midfield

Wayne Rooney

Paul Scholes’ recent claim that Wayne Rooney has “all the ability to take over my old position at Manchester United” has reopened the door for a long-thought-buried conversation. Those supporting Scholes do so reasoning that Rooney can hit sweeping passes, just like the retired United midfielder, and that the 28-year-old’s well-roundedness will shine in deeper areas. […]

Data Rant: Rooney’s sale makes sense

Wayne Rooney, Chelsea

Paul Scholes caused much ruckus this week by claiming that “Wayne [Rooney's peak] could have been … when he was 26.” Sir Alex Ferguson’s vehement efforts to dispatch Rooney also hints at something more than simply a personality clash. After all, on the pitch, the 28-year-old has been mediocre for three seasons now. The new […]

The contract can wait: Rooney should be moved to midfield

Wayne Rooney, David Moyes

When David Moyes was appointed Manchester United manager last summer he was seen as the safe choice to grind out results in the Premier League; perhaps earning the club time to woo a more fashionable manager in the future. Yet, very few supporters expected to find United in such a lowly position heading into the […]

Rooney manoeuvres club into position … again

Wayne Rooney

You have to hand it to Wayne Rooney: he has been phenomenally successful at squeezing money out of Manchester United since joining the club in 2004. Or perhaps more accurately, it is his management team of Paul Stretford and company at Triple S Sports, which has manipulated the club in negotiations twice over the past […]

Now Rooney must provide more than hard work

Wayne Rooney, David Moyes

When Wayne Rooney executed a full-blooded tackle on Ramires near his own corner flag during Manchester United’s recent draw with Chelsea Old Trafford rose to its feet in appreciation. It was about the most exciting thing that happened during a game that said much about Jose Mourinho’s negativity and, potentially, offered a glimpse at David Moyes’s […]

Rooney departure backed by the numbers

Wayne Rooney

Sir Alex Ferguson announced his retirement after sealing Manchester United’s 20th league title last May. The greatest football manager in history could and should have just enjoyed the plaudits that poured in. Instead, he made public Wayne Rooney’s second transfer request to let loose a maelström of media coverage that has lasted to this day. […]

van Persie and Welbeck threaten to put Rooney in the shade

Robin van Persie, Swansea

The insouciant shrug of the shoulders, a look of frustration, a sharp word with the referee; a new season, same old Wayne Rooney. Except that the striker’s moments of petulance on Saturday came in duplicate, following each of the goals that he helped to create, as Manchester United scored victory on the opening day of the new […]

Woodward heads home amid increasing farce

Wayne Rooney

There was a tacit policy under David Gill’s leadership, or an attempt at least, to keep Manchester United’s transfer dealings under wraps. The thought process was sound: while tabloid-fueled speculation filled the back pages, and social media hummed a summer long, the club retained a silent dignity. It is a policy seemingly broken during the […]

Rooney cut to size in United’s game of brinkmanship

Wayne Rooney

One wondered just how much Manchester United would take before a line was finally drawn. Briefing and counter-briefing a summer long, the club holding Wayne Rooney to the lucrative five-year contract signed the last time the player wanted out; the striker’s people  maneuvering the media game to only marginally credible effect. So it comes to […]