Wayne Rooney has stated his desire to remain at Manchester United beyond the end of the season.
The striker, who has been at Old Trafford since he signed for United as a raw 18-year-old teenager in 2004, released a statement around January confirming that he would not be moving in the winter transfer window, and that he wanted to stay and continue to achieve things with the club.
However, rumours continued to grow, as he struggled for fitness and did not play a part in the club’s 3-2 win over Southampton in the League Cup final.
Several fans and pundits believe his time at the club at which he has broken numerous records and won plenty of titles, is set to end in the summer. Having been their talisman for almost every season he has played for them, and always sacrificing himself for the good of the team to play wherever the manager asked him to, he has started showing signs of slowing down.
At the age of 31, having amassed an incredible 750 career appearances – 554 of those for United – Rooney appears to be past his best. This has been without a doubt the Englishman’s worst season at the Theatre of Dreams, and he has been linked with a move back to his first club, Everton.
The Red Devils’ record goalscorer and captain still believes he has something to offer United though, and despite the reports surrounding his future, he has revealed his desire to continue playing for the club next season.
Speaking to the media ahead of United’s Europa League semi-final second leg clash against Celta Vigo, Rooney said: “My focus is on getting into this final. It’s a massive opportunity for us to win the European final.
“Would I like to stay? I’ve been at this club 13 years, of course I want to stay. I haven’t thrown my toys out of the pram but I do want to play to help the team. Football changes. You have different challenges in your career.
“I would like to play more but I’ve tried to help the team on and off pitch. Of course you want to play every game. I’ve had to try to take my chance when called upon. I try to do my best for the team.”
Rooney also admitted that his “sole focus” at the moment is ensuring that United are back in the Champions League next season.
“It’s important for us to be back in the Champions League,” he added. “This club belongs there. Realistically it’s going to be difficult to do it through the league. This is a European semifinal. It’s the biggest competition we’ve had a realistic chance of winning in the last two or three years.”
Written by Reyhan Ashley Nath
Manchester United fan, Wayne Rooney is his role model. Passionate writer who has written for several sites in the past. He’s also an aspiring pianist and creates background music for BlameFootball’s Youtube channel.