Friday, 22 October 2010

Rooney stays!

"You''ll never know what I really think!"
One of the most extraordinary and challenging weeks in Sir Alex Ferguson's managerial career has ended with him winning again!

United get to defend the balance sheet value of Wayne Rooney in the only way they can in these days of the Bosman and Webster rulings: by committing their star asset to a long-term contract.

It was a crazy few days where Rooney asked to leave Manchester United - and ended with him penning a new five-year deal. Now United have about three more years to sell him at optimum value, without Bosman diminishing it.

Hours before, Paddy Power and William Hill both closed their books on Rooney staying. Hills did so after a spate of large bets were placed on Rooney staying. These were all placed at shops in Liverpool.

An interesting theory doing the rounds was that the whole fiasco occurred because Rooney blamed "colleagues" for introducing him to his dubious lady friends and generally leading him astray.

Colleen's condition for staying with him was that he distance himself from such "friends", meaning he had to leave United. This is a female take on this and it's plausible, if only because "blaming the lads" is a very blokeish tendency.

Macheda was right about him!
"United lack ambition" doesn't really stand up to scrutiny as a reason to leave either. Only Manchester City are net spenders in the transfer market - and wages are hardly the issue. Rooney could presumably ask for a clause in his contract guaranteeing he'd be the highest-paid player. United gave this to Roy Keane, I'd be surprised if they didn't give it to Rooney.

But moving forward, the only currency that really matters is a dramatic upturn in his form: "How will Rooney respond?".

He needs to buckle down and get to work. He's apologised to Fergie - now get on with it!

Fergie will expect nothing less after enduring one of the most difficult weeks in his near quarter century tenure as United boss.