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Time to increase Rooney’s salary again?

Judging on his performances so far this season, Wayne Rooney has justified the club’s decision to keep hold of him in the summer after some interest from Chelsea and Arsenal. Both Arsene Wenger and Jose Mourinho confirmed their desire to sign the player but in the end  the most either club were prepared to offer was £24m.

David Moyes repeatedly claimed that the club were not going to entertain any bids but their position wasn’t really tested by any serious offers. When you consider that Chelsea paid £32m for Willian this summer, an unproven player coming from the Russian league who was transfer listed by his club, it was a fairly insulting affair for Rooney. Having played well below the expected standard for the second half of the season, he believed Sir Alex Ferguson should have continued starting him regardless and that he could be first choice elsewhere. Chelsea were crying out for a player of Rooney’s ability up front but weren’t prepared to stump up the cash.

Reports in the paper last week suggest that Chelsea’s failure to put in more effort to sign him has helped spur him on this season and he has decided that his long term future is at United. Whilst he’s never explicitly said it, it’s hard to see the Rooneys living on the continent, and having already burnt his bridges with City, there aren’t many other options remaining for him in England.

When Rooney last told the club he wanted to leave in 2010, his disloyalty was rewarded with a new massive contract, with the player pledging the rest of his career to the club.

It should have come as no surprise when, less than three years later, Rooney was pushing for a move away from United yet again. It is a surprise to read that the club is preparing to offer the player an increase on his £250k-a-week salary though. A few months ago, all the noises from the club seemed to suggest that Rooney’s next contract would be performance related. This would make sense. He isn’t getting any younger and even when we pay him an absolute fortune, £1m-a-month, it doesn’t buy his happiness or commitment. Think of the millions he earned from us when playing badly, or, worse, not playing at all after Ferguson confirmed Rooney had asked to leave.

If Rooney didn’t fancy a performance incentivised contract and the club let his current deal expire, he will be a few months short of 30 before he can sign a contract elsewhere. Whilst a club would save themselves the cost of a transfer fee, freeing up more money for his salary, it’s unlikely that any top English club would want to tie themselves to a lengthy contract for a player in his 30s, particularly one that is renowned for not taking care of himself properly.

The alternative to that is United selling Rooney in the summer but that is a notion that has been completely dismissed by the club. The transfer fee we could demand for Rooney with a year remaining on his deal and almost 29-years-old wouldn’t be worth what it would cost us if he joined Chelsea and helped them win the title at our expense. People have pointed to the £24m we paid for Robin van Persie when he was the same age, but those people have seemingly forgotten that the Dutchman was the PFA and Football Writers Player of the Year when we bought him. Rooney hasn’t even won United’s best player award since 2010, so whilst he is a quality player, we shouldn’t kid ourselves in to thinking we can expect anything like the money Arsenal did from us when Van Persie entered the final year of his deal.

Neither the club nor player are in an ideal situation. The club has a player who wants to leave every couple of years, although there is the possibility that has changed now Moyes has replaced Ferguson as manager. With Fergie singing Rooney’s praises in the press, talking up his form this season, then there’s less tension there too. But if the club don’t offer him the kind of contract he’s after, we may see a repeat of the form of last season when he was unhappy. The player knows his next contract will likely be his last big one in Europe, with the possibility of him going to the States towards the end of his career for a big pay day, but is definitely open to the idea of joining one of United’s rivals. But if he doesn’t sign a contract with United, he knows he will likely be tied to the club until he’s nearly 30 and past his peak, making him a less desirable option for a top club.

Rooney may very well see out his career at United, may become the club’s all time top scorer, but neither party is delighted by the prospect. For me, it doesn’t make an awful lot of sense to make Rooney the league’s best paid player. It would show our other players that behaving as he has is the best method for getting your own way. A performance related contract would help ensure we get the best out of Rooney for the rest of his time at the club. But if he’s got his eye on earning more than £250k-a-week, then any other offer might result in us being lumbered with an unhappy Rooney who doesn’t play well, still earning £1m-a-month.

But the Rooney situation has been handled very well by the club so far, so let’s hope they get it right again this time. He’s due a testimonial next summer and Rooney at his best is just the kind of player we want. The club need to find a way of keeping him performing whilst not compromising their standards. With contract talks set to be underway, we’ll soon see if that is a possibility.


About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. matty says:

    I really love how samuel advocates for a 5-6game sequence for ando, buh slates kagawa after just one on the ferking left wing. Sir go to youtube and watch kagawa in the middle for japan vs the dutch and belgium. And if after watching that,you dont still see kagawa as a massive improvement on rooney as a playmaker then you need to propose to the wayneboy, cos the man-crush is getting a bit excessive. In all your arguements all i notice is you advocating is for united to continue playing playmakers as makeshift wingers or on the bench just to accomodate a striker who offers as much as nothing when compared to them as a playmaker just cos of his ego and past glory as a ferking STRIKER(not even as a playmaker for ferks sake).
    I know you cant understand the hype behind kagawa and judging by some of ur hateful assumptions dont believe he has all that ability. Let me tell you why united fans hype up kagawa so much. . .its cos he’s the best bet we have from finally ditching the ancient 4-4-2 formation and over reliance on wingers. We all hoped his signature would finally make us play more continental and less rigid footie. I bet you if it was honda/juan mata/goetze we got instead, we would still be advocating for them to be played in the middle ahead of the wayneboy. Fact i’d put nick powell, perriera, anderson and petrucci as playmakers ahead of rooney or any striker(no9) in the world for pete’s sake.

  2. parryheid says:

    How about 6/7 Years not games have a word with yourself ffs.

  3. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Matty – vast majority of what you have posted is your conclusion, not entirely truthful though.. I’m sure you wish it was, you’ve at least bothered to post so thanks for that

    A big difference between and anderson. Anderson barely strings 3 games together, whether that be due to injury, inconsistency.. United as of now do not have plenty of options in central midfield and hence, I highlighted the brazilian as surely an option. Kagawa can’t play central midfield, neither can anderson yo an extent but he hqs more of the attributes to play there. I mentioned anderson purely on lack of options in central mid and if he is avalaible then why not give him an opportunity.

    I DON’T require people like you to highlight the qualities kagawa possesses or his potential capability. Matter of fact, I do rate him highly but the fact is, (which i’m sure deeply pains you) he’s shown nothing on a sustainable or consistent basis at the level united demand in order to warrant the drama and emotional wreckage that occurs when he is omitted. He’s shown NOTHING to warrant a big club like united to build a team that gets the best out of him.. You keep rolling out his dortmund’s contributions and keep salivating at his youtube clips but that sums up kagawa, he is an highlight bearer, a glimpse machine, a flasher… He’s shown potential to spark and then fades.

    The great great players as i’ve pointed out can adapt to different challenges and stil make significant impact.. Kagawa has yet to do this for united, he must adapt to manchester united and NOT the other way round. Excuses about his position are dull, an easy get out clause for a player that has failed to grasp the enormity of playing for manchester united. His mentality is called into question, does he believe in himself enough to make telling-sustainable impact? Can he be an influential member of the squad?. Your folktales about kagawa somehow being the saviour of united transfering to the modern style has no leg to stand on, he’s shown nothing to merit that accolade. Do I think he has quality? Absolutely, his technical quality is easy on the eye but you may struggle to accept this but shinji needs to show more potency in other gather more trust from his team mates and I think he has the quality but i’m not entire it will transcend consistently to the pitch.. I hope he succeeds but I won’t hide reality even if it doesn’t go with the flow of people like yourself.

    This saying that against or for certain players cracks me up, i’m just not afraid to say it how exactly it is, i’m not here to please you or anyone, if I was then my views will be tuned down. Accept it

    If united will move from a 442, it will be up to moyes, not kagawa and even if you were stating that the attributes of certain players will contribute to the shift of style, I would bet on a adnan januzaj or other younger players/potential purchases than an unproven glimpse personified kagawa to make changes. Systems are employed by managers, moyes should know a method to get the best out of players and i’ve always stated, I see no reason why kagawa, van persie, rooney etc can’t all play together aided by rotation as wel but it’s up to.moyes to play the right fluid tactics and the players to follow them.

    I don’t have to justify myself to you and frankly, I couldn’t give less of a fuck but try to read my opinions and see the balance, i’m not for or against anyone, It is what it is.

  4. keanoisdaman says:

    Don’t worry samual…mattys a tit

  5. Rukky says:

    dragon_beast_false prophet (PROONEY) @08:08 says:’
    chicha is not going anywhere. I’ll rather RVP be gone than OUR pea. perish the thought!’ Everyone loves chicha but only a clueless coach would sell a all firing rvp to keep a chicha happy, understandably that post was out of emotion and logic.

  6. martin the nairobian says:

    @matty Samuel on kagawa is a lost cause.he pretends to rate him while all he does is slate him for not proving himself as a fucking left winger.put your wayne boy on the left and let’s see how much of an impact he’ll have playing in a 4-4-2??
    Kagawa has nothing to prove to anyone.everytime he’s been given a chance to play behind the strikers he’s been brilliant.creating more chances than rooney could in the whole match.or do u need me to remind you which games kagawa has been afforded the chance to play behind rvp or rooney himself?

  7. MombasaRed says:

    What happened to Scholes career when he got shunted to the left of the midfield?

  8. matty says:

    Martin i know, just having a laugh watching him type type epistles to justify his rooney man-crush. Kagawa with a woeful japan team outshines rooney with the 3lions, aint that proof enough? Rooney as a playmaker/second striker and england couldnt muster one single shot on target against the german B-team. Kagawa in his combined 10mins in middle has outplayed rooney of this whole yr as a playmaker. They say rooney is our best player this year and i cant help but laugh, the playmaker of a team that struggles to create anything per game is their best player? Loool how ironic can that statement get. Typical english meatheads celebrating workhorses over talent.
    Samuel you call rooney a premier league legend? thats even highly debatable cos i dont remember him finishing any of the seasons as the top striker. Neither has he been the main man in any of our title yrs. The last time he was our top scorer we won ferk all, in 2010 when he was our top scorer we ended up trophyless too. 2011 when he was injured for most of it, berba and chicha won us the league. Now he pales to rvp as a no9 and massively to kagawa as a no10, buh the english must have their media hyped messiah in the team no matter what.

  9. Tommy says:


    Yes Alonso is a similar player to Carrick, but with Carricks age he will inevitably play less and less and on a free transfer you cant go wrong, simple really when good players are potentially on a free it would take a fool not not be interested, plus he knows English footballer so wouldn’t need to adapt!

  10. matty says:


    Real united fans: “but the team plays better with kagawa or a continental playmaker”

    Rooney bandwagon fans: “but rooney has earned the right to play wherever he wants”

    Loool this shows which group of fans actually put the team above individuals

  11. matty says:

    Samuel i hope you would type one of those long novel pieces of yours explaining how paul scholes was never good enough for england and should have won the balon’dor playing left wing for them, or you’d automatically look like the thickest hypocrite breathing right now.

  12. dragon_beast_false prophet (PROONEY) says:


    You are right. My post was out of EMOTION and LOGIC as you rightly stated. Haha. Funny how the truth can NEVER be hidden. I also love the intensifier you give to RvP by saying “fit and firing” and the downer you give to chicha by saying simply “a chicha”. Talk about double standards. All I know is that a fit and firing chicha outclasses a fit and firing rvp over the course of a full season. No doubt about that.

  13. Tommy says:


    “All I know is that a fit and firing chicha outclasses a fit and firing rvp over the course of a full season. No doubt about that.”

    Hahahaha I love Chico but a fit and firing RVP pisses all over him, How many years has RVP finished top scorer in a row again in the league? He will be collecting the golden boot again in may!!

  14. martin the nairobian says:

    @ MombasaRed
    “What happened to Scholes career when
    he got shunted to the left of the
    Should probably ask samuel.he keeps preaching about how good players make an impact wherever they are asked to play.

  15. Ahmed Bilal says:

    Keep him, renew but don’t increase wages (you can easily boost the signing on fee to compensate). He’s still good for another 2-3 years, might as well get the most out of him.

  16. DreadedRed says:

    martin the nairobian & MombasaRed

    Lay off Samuel, you’re way off base. He is NOT anti-Kagawa, as you would understand had you been here long enough. In fact, he’s been a lot more pro-Kagawa than most (excluding the patriotically blinded, of course).

  17. martin the nairobian says:

    “I would bet on a
    adnan januzaj or other younger players/potential
    purchases than an unproven glimpse personified
    kagawa to make changes.”
    This surely doesn’t look like someone who rates kagawa.
    Its the same old song everytime.unproven unproven unproven.then I wonder,is he supposed to prove himself as a left winger or The playmaker we all know he is?

  18. DreadedRed says:

    martin the nairobian

    You’ve been here less than 2 months, we’ve been discussing Kagawa for 18 months. How do you know what views Samuel has put forth in that time? You don’t know.

    Also relevant, is the fact that I’ve been reading Samuel’s views on RoM on a myriad of topics connected to United for about 5 years now. You’re telling him what he thinks, but actually you are way off the mark.

    Moving on … how’s Nairobi?


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