Wayne Wayne Go Away, Come Again Some Other Day

Just to be clear, I don’t want Wayne Rooney to leave United. But it was too tempting a pun to let go of. Right, now that that’s settled, let’s get to the point. What’s the deal with Shrek? Why is he so fat? Why doesn’t he score more goals? And what’s with the attitude? And the transfer requests? Why is there no positive press going around about him?

No sensible United fan would want Rooney to leave the club. He’s too good a player to let go. He’s a lethal finisher, he plays all over the field (in a single game sometimes), his passes are like Jennifer Lawrence’s body – simply breathtaking, and I swear he’s going to score that chip one day. However, sometimes he behaves almost like a character straight out of Jersey Shore, i.e. an absolute dickwad. We’ve been helpless audience to his theatrical transfer request and u-turn once before. This time it’s an even bigger drama, with him contradicting Sir Alex’s statement that he put in a transfer request.

At the core of the entire issue however, is the manner in which Rooney has been treated at the club by Sir Alex and fans alike. In 2004, after Rooney scored THAT goal for Everton and was subsequently signed by United in a similarly bitter transfer saga, he was poised to be the next big thing in world football. Bigger than Ronaldo. I guess we know how that panned out. Part of that is down to Sir Alex’s decision to construct the team around Ronaldo instead of him. He played out of position as a winger supporting Ronaldo instead of the other way around, and Ronaldo prospered as a result. After Ronaldo left United, Rooney had his best season in terms of goals scored, 34. Just as he was beginning to develop into one of the best in the world (which he is in my opinion), we signed Van Persie.

Good job. I score 34 goals and you sign Van Persie #ScrewLogic
Good job. I score 34 goals and you sign Van Persie #ScrewLogic

There have only been 2 seasons where Rooney was the central figure at United, the season after Ronaldo left, 09-10 and 11-12, and he scored 34 goals in both of them. Unlike Ronaldo, who has a team built around him, and Messi, whose influence has permeated all the way into the Barcelona board apparently, Rooney has never been the star at United and in fact has always been the proverbial sacrificial goat. He has been criticized for his weight, but the truth is, on the pitch there isn’t a more committed player than him (except maybe Berbatov). If he loses the ball, more often than not, he chases down the defender and recovers the ball himself.

Another rather disappointing aspect of this issue is the reaction of the fans. The complete disregard for the 10 years he has given for the club in the blink of an eye. I mean he played as a defensive midfielder when the team needed him to. Agreed, Rooney is behaving like a prima-donna and not for the first time, but we need to understand where it is coming from. The first time, as we found out, was all about money, so he probably deserved the wrath of the fans and he took it on his chin. But this time around it is about being the alpha-male of United and who can really blame him? He was booed during the medal ceremony and snubbed by the fans during the Open Bus Parade. Why are we antagonizing Rooney?

Forget THIS GOAL already?
Forget THIS GOAL already?

There are girls who like being wooed – you know chocolates, bouquets, champagne, the whole nine yards. And there are girls who are happy just being with you. That does not make the former inferior in any way. Similarly, there are players who want the spotlight, the cheering of the fans and the money, and then once every couple of lifetimes comes a Scholes. That does not mean someone who wants the spotlight is inferior to Scholes (although in all probability they are) simply because they want the spotlight.

Instead of being furious, I actually pity Rooney. He could be the fans’ darling any day if he wants to, but he chooses not to. There really isn’t anything one can do about the way he was previously handled at the club, but we cannot promise to fulfill his not unreasonable demands either. The only thing we can do, is tell him we’re grateful for his service and always will be. So Wayne, get your stuff together, think long and hard about your decision and stay, because you know you’re loved here.

Ashay is a part of the @Football_P family. You can follow him at @EatPrayFap

Ashay Kapse

Lives at the intersection of politics, sports, music, and films. Used to be young, but now doesn't get asked for an ID at bars.