Wayne Rooney completed his 10 years at Manchester United after having arrived at Old Trafford as a teenager from Everton in 2004.
The England international was signed by Red Devils’ former manager Sir Alex Ferguson on the deadline day of the summer transfer window, a decade ago. During his time with the 20-times English champions, the striker has played alongside world class players and is still continuing to do the same.
A few low points of his United career are handing in a transfer request to leave United, not once but on two occasions. The latter came during Ferguson’s final season as United boss and earlier reports suggested the relationship was bitter between the player and the former manager.
However, Rooney has publicly expressed his gratitude towards Ferguson for signing him at such a young age. The former Everton man also went on to claim that the great Old Trafford elder is an “incredible person.”
“He [Ferguson] was vitally important. I’m grateful to him for having the faith to bring me in from Everton,” Rooney said.
“I think he’s an incredible person and manager, the way you see his desire for the game. He certainly helped me a lot and helped us all.”
“At the time I was coming into the squad as a young lad and there were a few other young lads. He brought all that together and made us world (club) champions. I’m very grateful for everything he’s done.”
“I was nervous of course. It was a bit weird because I met him here at the training ground and then went to finalise it at Old Trafford. He drove me over, just the two of us in his car. I remember being nervous but he was great and made me feel comfortable.”
“I’m a strong-minded person and sometimes you have to make tough decisions. No-one else could make it for me. It was down to me whether I left Everton and I made my agent aware and told my parents that I was going to join Manchester United. I had no regrets doing that.”
“It was tougher for my family who stayed in Liverpool whereas I moved to Manchester but that’s part of football,” he added.
Ferguson revealed Rooney had informed the club about his decision to leave the club in his last home game. The Scot’s comments saw United’s league rivals Chelsea and Arsenal fighting for his signature. Especially, the Blues were keen on adding the player to their squad last summer.
The transfer window ended and Rooney continued as United player. However, the 28-year-old was still linked with a move away from Old Trafford even for the most part of the last calendar year.
The player ended the speculation by signing a long-term deal with the Red Devils and put the rumours surrounding his future to bed. Rooney is hoping to spend his rest of career at United as the Old Trafford outfit are preparing for a new era this season.
“I hope so. I think the plan is I’ve just signed new long-term deal at the club and hopefully in five years’ time we’ll be sat down for a 15-year one (interview). I don’t see any reason why not,” Rooney explained.
With his latest comments, Rooney has ended the differences he had with Ferguson. This should also please United fans, as the striker came out in the open and heaped praise on his former manager.
The striker has already shown his worth on the pitch and one can argue that he has still a lot of firepower to overtake Sir Bobby Charlton’s goal scoring record for both club and country.
Rooney is now one of the senior most players at the club and has already impressed new manager Louis van Gaal during the pre-season tour. His attitude has seen the Dutchman hand the captain’s armband at Old Trafford.
This was followed by Rooney being named England captain by Roy Hodgson, following Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard’s decision to retire from international football.