Once every two years there’s a lot of noise about Wayne Rooney wanting to leave. Every time, it seems closer than ever, but Manchester United are actually receiving and listening to offers for the player, with Chelsea making an official one (slightly insulting), while Arsenal, who usually don’t interfere when it comes to big-name players, also feel they have a shot.
But where’s the truth and where is it pure speculation? Hard to say, but it’s getting clearer and clearer by the minute. This whole ordeal began in August 2012, with a terrible performance of an out-of-shape Wayne Rooney, which paved the way for Robin van Persie, who came off the bench on his debut for United, to become the team’s opening striker. Rooney? He was still important, but Alex Ferguson was already planning offloading him.
Just like his injury now, Rooney was out for about a month right after the season started. He returned as good as he always was, but it seemed that two months of quality football was the best he could bring to the team last season, and faded away as the season progressed, which really didn’t matter with United winning the league title easily.
Rooney handed in a transfer request, but United weren’t willing to listen. According to reports, the arrival of David Moyes changed his mind about staying, and Rooney decided he’s willing to give Old Trafford another go (two years left on his deal anyway), but he wanted the club to take back the claims he asked to leave, hoping it helps him mend things with fans, who aren’t exactly on his side in this whole ordeal.
But the most recent comments from David Moyes (probably coming after the club decided the Rooney is up for sale for the right offer and rival) about Rooney being a rotation-type player, nothing more, seemed to have been the last straw for Rooney, who definitely wants out at this point. The question is – will anyone take him?
Jose Mourinho has said Chelsea don’t want anyone else at the moment, and less than 24 hours later launched a bid for Rooney. Now he says that Rooney is the only player his team is interested in. Hard to believe anything these day. Initial reports suggested Chelsea offered cash (around £10 million) and Juan Mata. Later, the truth came out: A £20 million bid, without players in exchange. Obviously, United rejected it.
And then there are Arsenal, with Arsene Wenger (through the Guardian) suggesting that his team shouldn’t be counted out when it comes to Rooney, even if his wages of £250,000 per week are something the club has never seen. To me, it simply sounds like Wenger trying to appease Arsenal fans, getting them to think he’s actually in the game for big names, even though he’s really not, as shown by the lack of activity in the market so far.