Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Rooney's saga might be ending but his reputation is damaged

It seems Wayne Rooney might be signing a new contract at Manchester United. All that nonsense of him moving to Chelsea and being unhappy at the club seems to have laid low and now suddenly he feels loved again and is going to get paid handsomely to stay at Old Trafford. In this whole mess of a saga the only thing that came out is the following: Wayne Rooney might be a fantastic footballer when he's on form but he's also quite a cunt when he wants more money.

There was a lot of noise from Manchester United fans on Monday night cheering for Wayne Rooney. Chelsea fans even sang to him "we'll see you next week". He must have felt like Miley Cyrus while she was doggy-styling herself all over Robin Thicke. But that's not the point (or is it?).

The point is Manchester United fans are scared. The thought of Wayne Rooney playing under Jose Mourinho as the lone striker being fed by Oscar, Hazard, Mata, De Bruyne, Lampard, Schurrle and co is a terrifying prospect (that's not to mention that it's a World Cup year and you know what that means...). Manchester United fans know that and fear it. It was obvious on Monday. They cheered his every touch as if he scored a goal. They wanted him to feel loved. They wanted him to know that he may be a cunt, but he is their "cunt". They want him to stay...supposedly.

But that's when some Manchester United fans proved to be fickle. This is Wayne Rooney, the player that Manchester United turned into a worldwide superstar; not the other way around.  The club was winning trophies long before he arrived and will be continuing to do so when he leaves.

The fans seemed to have forgotten that Rooney actually handed in a transfer request in 2010 claiming United "lacked ambition"....yes, remember that? He forced Sir Alex Ferguson to go public with one of the strongest speeches you'll ever see from a manager (click here to watch the legend at work) when the rumor was - and some reports were strongly documented - that Rooney was on his way to Manchester City.

Now this summer, in the midst of Sir Alex's retirement, the player asked for a second transfer request to leave and join...Chelsea?! Talk about a lack of respect. Please someone tell me that the majority of United fans are a bit more clever than what we saw on Monday evening. This is a player that Fergie broke the bank for to sign when he was only 18. A player that the club turned into a world class footballer. A player that got the privilege to play alongside some of the greatest football players in the history of the game and win trophies with them. And the 2 times he's asked to leave, the links were with Manchester City and Chelsea? And still United fans have forgiven him...

So what happens now? Rooney's saga is forgotten, the Old Trafford faithful forgive him and it's all lovey-dovey? It sure seems that way, but it shouldn't be. When a player holds his club to ransom (twice!) and they fall for it, surely the club has to ask itself some questions. We all agree that Wayne Rooney is a beast of a footballer, but with his antics, he should never be considered as a club legend. He might be called as such by the club (they call Quinton Fortune a legend on MUTV, so their opinion is irrelevant), but the true fans know that deep down, Rooney is just another footballer. Nothing more, nothing less. Even if he breaks Charlton's goal-scoring record, it will always feel tarnished.

He doesn't do it for the love of the club anymore, he does it for the money. He can kiss the badge all he wants. He can say all the right words in his next autobiography (let's not even start talking about the fact that a 27 year old footballer has an autobiography), but we all know that somewhere down the line, even if he scores the winner in the Champions League final, he will pull another stunt like this on United fans. As long as he wears the jersey, he should have the support of the fans - but only to a certain extent. The ass-kissing we saw on Monday was too much for my liking. Any player wearing that shirt deserves the support they get, but when the player feels bigger than the badge and disrespects it (twice!), he doesn't deserve respect. He owes United fans a lot more than they owe him. Let's hope they realize that.