Please Don’t Leave Us, Wayne!
Over the last week or so, there have been a number of reports that Wayne Rooney, Manchester United’s superstar for nearly 10 years, wants to leave the club and go to Chelsea. To refute of these claims, the Man U camp has messaged strongly that Rooney is “not for sale”. One way or the other, Rooney would be making a monstrous career mistake if he were to leave his team. He risks losing his stature as one of the greatest players in the club’s history, alienating fans and even sitting on the bench at Chelsea. If the rumors are true, Rooney should put his pen back in his pocket and not sign a deal that will take him away from his home and his team.
There is no denying that Rooney’s career at Manchester United ranks as one of the greatest in the club’s history. From the time he first came to Manchester United from Everton, Wayne Rooney has repeatedly wowed fans and foes alike with his magical skills and seemingly infinite wisdom. Rooney appears on Bleacher Report’s Greatest XI in Manchester United’s history, albeit on the bench. However, considering that it is Manchester United, arguably the greatest football club ever, even being outside of the starting lineup for the Greatest XI is an accomplishment in itself. Just to put this achievement into perspective, another member of the bench is a man named David Beckham, one of the world’s most famous and recognizable footballers.
Rooney has also made his mark by being responsible for some of the club’s greatest moments, from the multiple occurrences of him raising a championship trophy of any kind for the club to his famous bicycle kick goal against Manchester City. That said, if Rooney left, as much as people would lament the fact that he left, real fans would remember him as the heart and soul of the club that he was and one of the greatest center forwards to ever grace the game of football with their presence.
Despite his stellar accomplishments, there are some real reasons why a move to Chelsea would be a disaster for Rooney’s career.
First, he risks slipping into relative obscurity potentially playing off the bench, something he has already declared that he does not want to do. Simply put, Chelsea just has too many good players, especially when it comes to forwards. Chelsea have Fernando Torres, Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku, Demba Ba and Andre Schürrle. Rooney would face particularly stiff competition for a first team spot from Torres and Hazard, two world-class players who regularly play at the international level for world powers Spain and Belgium, respectively.
Another problem with a potential move to Chelsea for Wayne Rooney is that the fans’ reaction would be one of complete devastation. To most Man U fans (myself included), Rooney is more than just a player. He is a symbol. A symbol of tremendous success. The kind of success that has defined Manchester United throughout its history and he is the current torchbearer. So to take away such a mesmerizing and iconic figure like Wayne Rooney would be effectively tantamount to the end of the world as far and Manchester United fans go.
Wayne Rooney’s legacy at Manchester United is unquestioned, but it is how that legacy will be remembered that is at stake here. He has proven time and time again to be one of Manchester United’s best players ever. But if he leaves now, he risks abandoning a legacy that belongs in the highest echelon of Manchester United fame, where only the true legends of the club’s history reside.
Hopefully, Wayne Rooney will stay at Old Trafford and recognize the tremendous outpouring of appreciation and support he has been getting from the club’s fans. All that’s left is for Rooney to begin this upcoming season not as the Wayne Rooney who is periodically injured and a mediocre player because of it. We need to see the Wayne Rooney of old. The one that captivates us all and makes us proud to call him our leader.