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Manchester United's Wayne Rooney reveals a surprising biggest influence

Wayne Rooney

The England striker, who has played under the likes Sir Alex Ferguson, Fabio Capello and David Moyes, explains an interesting choice for his best manager

Manchester United talisman Wayne Rooney has claimed that the biggest influence on his career has been former Everton youth coach Colin Harvey.

The United striker has played under the likes of Sir Alex Ferguson, Fabio Capello and David Moyes for both club and country during a glittering career.

As a teenage prodigy, Rooney was given his Premier League debut by Moyes in 2002, before blossoming into a world-class talent under the guidance of Ferguson following his £30 million move in 2004.

However, when asked to name who had the more of an impact on him during his footballing life, the former Toffees youngster surprised all with his answer.

Speaking to Sky Sports' Soccer AM, Rooney said: "There's obviously a few from my time at Everton, I was obviously working with David Moyes and then at Manchester United it was Alex Ferguson.

"But I've always said the one who had the biggest influence on me and my football career was Colin Harvey at the Everton youth team.

"Obviously you're at that level where you're on the fringes of getting into the first team and you need to show the right attitude, the right temperament and desire to get in there and say there.

"Basically, he was really hard, and it's only when you look back do you really appreciate why he done that. I always believed I was going to be a footballer and everything else was secondary to that."

Rooney also explained England boss Roy Hodgson's method of working, claiming the Three Lions' manager strikes the "perfect balance" between motivating his players when needed while also showing a personable side.

"He’s a lovely fella," added Rooney. "He comes up and speaks to you and asks how your family are, and I think he’s got the perfect balance of being a gentleman on one hand and if he has to he can snap."

Despite United enduring a wretched campaign, Rooney still finished the season with 17 Premier League goals, the same as Manchester City forward Sergio Aguero.

Rooney has taken a physio with him on his post-season holiday in an attempt to arrive at next month's World Cup in optimum condition.

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