Wayne Rooney broke the all-time Manchester United goalscoring record against Stoke last week, as I’m sure we are all well aware.
With 547 appearances for the club, alongside a trophy cabinet that includes: 5x Premier League medals, 1x Champions League, 1x FA Cup, 1x FIFA Club World Cup, 2x League Cup and 4x Community Shield medals. These, alongside countless personal accolades, prove he has won all there is to win.
He has played at the highest level since being a teenager – it’s hard to forget that image of him in front of the ROO NI Ford KA at Goodison – and has been in a 13 year marriage to United ever since the tender age of 18.
Now, the time has come for him to sever those ties. He needs to dump Manchester United, end the love affair and bow out at the top. And, like that old fable in Cosmo magazine says: ‘To get over one, you should get under another.’
The rumour mill is, of course, churning. And at the moment it’s linking Wayne to a mega-deal in China. The figures being rumoured are around £700,000 per week – with suggestions of up to £1million being banded around – which would make him the footballer with the biggest salary in the world. In a close second would be former teammate Carlos Tevez, who headed to Shanghai Shenua for £615,000 per week.
At the moment a player who was once one of the most exciting to watch in the Premier League is a bit-part player. He’s being rolled out onto the pitch in the second half like the extra chairs on Christmas day. He rarely starts a game and pretty much never features from the beginning in the big games.
With new players taking the opportunity to shine, and with Zlatan seemingly taking the lead role, it would appear there are new sheriffs in town. Rooney’s personality and talent flourishes best when he is the main man. If he’d like to re-store that, he needs to pack his bags.
No one would look down on a player with such an illustrious career if he decided to head to China or even America. Take that last payday, get regular appearances and maybe even enjoy himself. As Jose Mourinho said: “The way he wants to end his career, the way he wants to enjoy the last part of his time, that belongs to him.”
Summer is the time to do that. Get out whilst you’re at the top and avoid any further embarrassment. Sir Alex Ferguson did exactly that, retiring after winning the Premier League for a final time.