In his Friday press conference, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson reacted to widespread reports in Thursday’s newspapers that Wayne Rooney would be sold by United in the summer after being dropped for the Real Madrid game.
“He’ll be here next year,” Ferguson said. “You can have my word on that.”
“There is no issue between myself and Wayne Rooney. To suggest we don’t talk is nonsense.”
Did we really expect him to say anything else?
Ferguson, who revealed he had banned The Daily Mail and The Independent newspapers “until they apologise” for the Rooney story, said the striker would be involved against Chelsea in the FA Cup quarter-final on Sunday.
Fergie explained his decision to drop Rooney saying:
“He understood the reasons completely. Tactically we got it right. We don’t always but we did then.
“Welbeck is the best player we have in terms of operating a double role. We had to chalk out Xabi Alonso’s ability to control the game, which he did, and also his ability to go further forward as an attacking player.”
As I wrote on Wednesday, United have been linked with another striker for months now, and with four top strikers on the books (Rooney, van Persie, Welbeck, Hernandez) one of them would have to be sold in order to make room for the new signing. I expected that to be Hernandez, but Ronney looks the more likely.
The problem for Rooney and his agents, is finding another club for him. United will not sell him to Man City or Chelsea, which leaves a very small list of clubs that could afford Rooney’s £200,000+ a week wages.
That list is probably Real Madrid, Barcelona, PSG, Bayern Munich and maybe Juventus.
The consensus is the British press is that PSG is the most likely destination, but with France’s 75% income tax I don’t see how they could afford Rooney and Ibrahimovic.
To pay Rooney’s current wages, it would cost PSG £800,000 A WEEK, making that deal financially prohibitive.
And that is the challenge for Rooney’s agent Paul Stretford. Unlike when Rooney got his contract extension a couple of years ago, the market for him has really shrunk under Financial Fiar Play and Stretford will have his work cut out for him getting Rooney a raise and a new deal somewhere else.
Where do you think Wayne Rooney will be playing next season?