Wayne Rooney reflects on his Manchester United debut

Wayne Rooney looks back on his debut for Manchester United back in September 2004.

Wayne Rooney has been reminiscing about his debut for Manchester United back in 2004.

Having impressed at Merseyside outfit Everton, the forward joined the Red Devils in the summer of 2004 for a reported transfer of £27 million.

At the time, the money splashed out by United on the then 18-year-old was shocking, but Rooney went on to prove that he is worth every penny.

The (then) teenager made his debut for his (then) new club on September 28, 2004 in a Champions League Group D match against Fenerbahce.

It was one of the greatest and most memorable debuts ever made by a United player, as Rooney scored a hat-trick to lead the then Sir Alex Ferguson-managed side to a 6-2 victory at Old Trafford.

The England international opened his account after turning in Ruud van Nistelrooy’s pass, scored his second by firing home from 20 yards out and wrapped up the hat-trick with a free kick in the second half.

Rooney seems to remember that match fondly and is looking forward to completing 10 years at United on Sunday. On Thursday, the 28-year-old posted the following photo on Instagram along with the message: ‘TBT to one of the best moments of my career, my @manchesterunited debut, it will be 10 years this Sunday’.

Rooney will certainly hope to mark the occasion with a victory. On Saturday, United will host West Ham United at Old Trafford in the Premier League, and perhaps one will see something special from the forward.

Even if Rooney does not produce anything special on Saturday, there can be no denial that he has proved to be a very special footballer indeed.

One of the best forwards in the world, the England international has been a key figure in United’s success over the past decade.

Despite his failings with the Three Lions, Rooney has been a huge success for United, winning the Premier League on multiple occasions and the Champions League once. So much is his important at Old Trafford that new United manager Louis van Gaal made him the team captain this season.

In a recent interview with Sky Sports, Rooney said that he has matured as a player and has ‘progressed’ in his game (click here to read more). And he certainly has, adding versatility in the process.

There have been suggestions that Rooney is past his prime – perhaps he is past his best and perhaps he was always overhyped. But one cannot deny that a ‘declining’ Rooney is still a world-class player who strikes fear into the hearts of every defender.

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