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Man United’s Dilemma Over Wayne Rooney

rooney-goalDepending on what newspaper you read, Wayne Rooney and David Moyes are either set to talk today about his future at Old Trafford, have already met, or have no plans to meet.

It’s been about five weeks since United announced that David Moyes was taking over from Sir Alex Ferguson. I cannot believe in that time that Moyes has not spoken to Rooney or his agent Paul Stretford. And both sides will have already decided what the future brings.

So what do United do with Rooney? One obvious answer, is that they keep the best English player in the game and the the clubs fourth all-time scorer. For those who knock Rooney, who is still only 27 and in the prime of his career, in the last six seasons he has led United to 3 Champions League Finals, 4 Premier League trophies, 1 Club World Cup and 1 League Cup. Oh and he won the Player of the Year in 2009-10. Not a bad CV.

Th flip side is that Rooney’s form dipped last season, and Robin van Persie took over the mantle as the team talisman. But keep in mind that in 2011-12, Rooney scored 34 goals in 44 appearances for United. Rooney is United’s highest paid player at around £200,000-a-week and with two years on his current contract, is probably looking for a new contract with a raise.

And that is United’s dilemma. Do they give Rooney, a player who Fergie had some serious long-term fitness doubts about, a new deal worth say £250,000-a-week?

If you look at Rooney’s body of work, you would say that it should be a no-brainer to sign him to a new deal. But with the play of RVP last season in Rooney’s preferred striker role, the question comes where does David Moyes play Rooney? Does he continue to play him off RVP, or does Moyes change the United system and play Rooney more as a number 10 in a 4-2-3-1 formation? And would Rooney be happy there?

I am not sure of that. From what I have read, Rooney still sees himself as a goalscorer, in that number 9 position, and he will not get that at United. So what does Wayne Rooney do?

From a footballing standpoint, it will be extremely difficult to match the success that he has enjoyed at United (12 trophies) at another English club. Which leads the logical move for Rooney to be overseas.

He has been linked with Bayern Munich and Real Madrid, and even Neymar last week talked up Rooney moving to Barcelona. None of them are bad choices, but Bayern and Real Madrid seem the most logical as they both would allow Rooney to play as a center-forward. It would be really interesting to see how Rooney progresses as a player by playing in Spain, or under Pep Guardiola’s guidance at Bayern.

I believe that it is both United’s and Rooney’s interest for him to move overseas this summer. With RVP in his preferred role and Shinji Kagawa probably more suited long-term to the No. 10 role, of Rooney signs a new five-year deal at United, I don’t think he will be happy where he is played.

If he goes to one of Europe’s big clubs, he gets to play in his preferred striker role, gets the pay raise that he wants, and continues to win medals.

How do you think the Wayne Rooney saga will end? Will he stay at United and sign a new deal this summer or will be be sold?

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