Wayne Rooney is a special player and for me, the most important one at Manchester United. Despite improving every season since joining United, he rarely gets the praise that he deserves. Sir Alex Ferguson recently admitted that it was time to play Rooney in his natural position, to allow the forward to receive the credit he’s worthy of.
Today, Fergie has spoken fondly of Rooney, recognising the young player’s desire to get out on the pitch and do well for the team, ahead of any personal accolades.
Wayne Rooney featured in a Nike advert playing as a goalkeeper and he looked pretty handy. When United needed an outfield player to go in goal against Portsmouth last season, Rooney was the first one vying for the shirt, although lost out to Rio Ferdinand. As Rio stood on the line waiting for Portsmouth to take their penalty, Rooney rushed over to offer some advice to our stand-in keeper.
Rooney’s footballing ability means that he could do a job in any position on the field, and whilst he is better suited to the attacking role, seeing him battling it out in midfield or defence later in his career wouldn’t be too shocking.
“We have to be fairer to Rooney this season,” Ferguson said. “He is such a willing performer that you are tempted to listen to him at times. He says he can play centre-half or centre midfield or in goal. This is the individual you are dealing with. There is a great saying from the old days ‘He can play anywhere’. Rooney thinks he can.”
Whilst last season was all about Cristiano Ronaldo, I’d love for Ferguson to keep to his word, play Rooney when he performs best, and see Wayne Rooney claiming the 08-09 season as his.