LONDON — Wayne Rooney became Manchester United’s all-time leading goalscorer on Saturday but his 250th goal for the Red Devils has inevitably thrown up plenty of questions about his future at Old Trafford.
[ VIDEO: Rooney’s best goals for United ]
Rooney, 31, was honored by the Football Writers’ Association at a tribute dinner in London on Sunday at the Savoy Hotel and spoke at length about his future with reports continuing to link him with a big-money move to China in the coming months and his manager Jose Mourinho saying the club won’t stand in his way if he wants to move on.
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Speaking with Sky Sports before the event Rooney revealed that although he isn’t happy at only playing a bit-part role at United this season under Mourinho, he is happy to stay at the club.
“I’m committed,” Rooney said. “I have been at the club for a long time. Football is a strange game. Anything can happen and things change very quickly but I am happy at Manchester United. Of course, as I have said before, I want to play more games. I am in a happy place, a good moment personally, so I think I have a year, with an option year to go. We will see what happens and what happens after that.”
Before going on stage to accept his award at the glitzy event, former England manager Roy Hodgson and current West Bromwich Albion captain (and Rooney’s long-time United teammate) Darren Fletcher spoke about the striker glowingly.
Rooney, now the all-time leading goalscorer for both England and United, posed for photos and signed autographs all night long.
He seemed overwhelmed with the award and it capped off a crazy 24 hours which saw him break Sir Bobby Charlton’s record to become United’s all-time leading scorer, celebrate the first birthday of his youngest child and then head to London for the tribute dinner alongside his wife Coleen.
Speaking to the FWA members (which included yours truly) and guests, Rooney also called for the media and players to come closer together in the future to help out the English national team.
“The media is a massive part of football and I’ve seen firsthand since I’ve become captain of Manchester United and England,” Rooney said. “I’ve recognized it has had a huge influence on the game and the players and especially the young English players because they are the ones who have to go out and perform. It’s tough. I also feel like it is sometimes a bit unfair. The one thing I think, for me, that should happen is we need to realize and the media need to realize that at this moment in time there is a huge gap between the media and the players. I think the quicker the media and players can come together and meet in the middle, then the better it is for English football.”
Much has been said about Rooney throughout his career but you cannot deny his quality and supreme goalscoring ability which will see him go down as a legendary figure for both England and Manchester United.
If he doesn’t end up in China in the not so distant future, he will have offers flooding in from the rest of the world.