The publicly-played-out transfer saga had initially looked to be a replication of the 27-year-old striker’s stance back in 2010 when he effectively held Manchester United, the most well-known football club in the world, to ransom over his contract.
After revealing his intentions to quit Old Trafford, he suddenly performed a complete reversal of his decision, strangely enough, when the club handed him a £250,000-a-week contract to sign.
This time around it looks as though it might be a case of United already having been tricked once and definitely not wanting to be tricked twice. David Moyes stated earlier this week that Rooney was needed at Old Trafford to perform the function of ‘cover’ Robin van Persie should the Golden Boot winner suffer injury (or suspension presumably).
Then, the club vice-chairman Ed Woodward came out publicly to state Rooney would not be offered a new and or improved contract and, furthermore, the club would not take issue in the case that he ran his current contract down (it expires in 2015).
This kind of behavior from a huge star player doesn’t sit well with the fans of most clubs and that, predominantly, comes from the notion that the clubs have limited resources (relatively) compared to clubs like Chelsea and in recent years Manchester City.
Since the owner of Roman Abramovich at Stamford Bridge a decade ago, Blues fans have enjoyed an abundance of world class talent cherry-picked from all around the world. Some of these huge Blues stars, favourites and even legends, however, arrived under not so glamorous conditions – often leaving behind a feeling of bitterness and betrayal in their wake.
One of the earliest ‘mercenaries’ as he was termed was Ashley Cole – now considered one of the best left-backs of his generation having won the Champions League, the Premier League and the FA Cup with the Blues.
But Cole (or ‘Cashley’ as he was known to Arsenal fans) was involved in a tapping up scandal and, following his book deal, the revelation that he ‘nearly crashed his car’ when he found out Arsenal ‘only’ offered him £55,000 a week to stay in North London back in 2006.
Cole wasn’t the first (nor the last either) – the Blues have spent a staggering £713 million on 72 purchases since his arrival in 2003. Manchester United’s own record transfer Juan Sebastian Veron was one of the first for £15 million in 2003.
Joe Cole became the next man to cross the English capital from West Ham along with Scott Parker from Charlton, Shaun Wright-Phillips from Manchester City for £24 million in 2005, Nicolas Anelka for £15 million in 2008, Yossi Benayoun and, most infamously, his Liverpool teammate Fernando Torres for £50 million, followed in 2010 by Raul Meireles, and Newcastle’s Demba Ba this January.
Apart from the ‘mercenary’ label Rooney would definitely have etched into his image as a United great if he packed his bags and left for Stamford Bridge, he also wouldn’t be alone in being considered one of, how shall I put it, one of England’s 'bad boys' alongside John Terry and close pal Ashley Cole.
Obviously I can’t afford not to mention that they all share in common one other trait and that is being exceptionally gifted footballers but, apart from that, it would appear Wayne Rooney would actually be ideally suited to Chelsea given their track record of signing and keeping players on huge wages that they don’t necessarily justify.
It seems to me Wayne Rooney and Chelsea are indeed a match made in heaven. Unless of course he wants to really make a name for himself and sign for City?
image: © nasmac