Ok, today everybody’s talking about Rooney leaving Man U in the summer.
Here are some thoughts on the matter.
Can he leave? No unless Sir Alex sells him.
Can he publicly say he wants to leave? No – unprofessional, already done it once, disrespectful, disloyal, Man U fans will hate him and no other fans like him at this point.
Can he ask to be put on transfer list? He can do a lot in private, as long as it protects the interests involved in the contract, including his, Man U, his agents and – crucially – his other sponsors who, if they dump him, his income will be severely slashed and contrary to what most people think, he cannot afford to do.
Does he have to do something? Yes, because the unusual noise that the press is making makes it suspicious if he doesn’t and cancels out any other public statement he makes. He has to commit in public, even if in private he is organising to go. At this point, twitter is his own worst enemy: It won’t be long before everybody will start asking why, when you go on twitter to tell the world about your new hair that nobody gives a f*** about, you won’t tell the ticket paying fans of the team that is paying you £200,000 a week whether you want to stay with it. He has to commit in some public form.
What does Man U and Sir Alex need to do? Nothing in public, the ball is on Rooney’s court. In an ideal world Sir Alex would like to keep Rooney and Rooney would appreciate his incredibly fortunate position in life and get back to his absolute best and produce the goods for Man U. This is still possible, and if Rooney returns to scoring hat-tricks and wins everything left to win this year with Man U, a lot of this will be forgotten. But maybe neither Sir Alex nor Rooney want that anymore. Sir Alex wants to be the boss of a team where what he says ‘goes’ without questioning from anybody and this is exactly correct. He has managed this so far and fully deserves it. On the other hand, Rooney and his agent(s) may see his own best interests elsewhere. In private Man U and Rooney can discuss offers. The problem there is that the team won’t sell for little money and Rooney won’t go anywhere for much less than he is making, i.e. very few places he can possibly go. Can’t go to Spain. Barca won’t have him and Real won’t buy him before Jose leaves. Can’t go to France as he is not Beckham, who is an excellent professional, a fashion icon, has a glamorous wife, has won all that is to be won and is at the end of an illustrious career AND has donated his wages to charity. Unlike Wayne, nobody can view him as an unsatisfiable greedy bastard – everybody loves him. Italy? Just imagine Coleen in Milan – but seriously, some of the big Italians may consider it, but won’t happen – what more can Rooney win with an Italian team that he can’t at Man U? So, within Europe, he would need to settle for an inferior league which will come with a massive wage reduction. Anji is possibly the only team that could afford him without a pay-cut but that would be the end of his sponsorship deals. And what will be the best possible outcome? That he wins the Russian league? Anji is very far from it, so he’ll be forgotten in the oblivion of the Russian league which plays during the summer when interest in football in Europe is now. He won’t do it. He can possibly go to the US and effectively call it a day but his sponsors may not like that either as, again, he is not Becks. Great as he is at football, he is an ugly thug with a scouse accent and no moral backbone. 50% of the (few) Americans who watch football won’t understand a word he is saying and the rest may dislike him for any of the above mentioned reasons, and that is if he performs as well as will be expected, i.e. win everything. His commercial value will never be like Beckham’s. Big risk to take, including his international career.
Some other team in the Premier League? Possibly the only team Sir Alex would not sell him is Man City but maybe it can happen if City pay for Rooney as if he is Ronaldo – in which case they may as well buy the real thing. Which only leaves one option. Chelsea. – maybe even under Mourinho? Stranger things have happened but again, a long shot 🙂
In conclusion: it is very very difficult for him to leave and he is an idiot to make it difficult to stay. His next public words need to be very carefully chosen, especially if he is not to declare his undying love for Man U and Sir Alex in them.