Wayne Rooney has heard enough of the constant and immediate criticisms that have accompanied each and every poor performance of his distinguished career.
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Speaking Thursday ahead of Manchester United’s home date against Newcastle United on Saturday (Watch live, 7:45 am ET on NBCSN and online via Live Extra), Rooney fielded questions regarding his perceived poor start to the 2015-16 season, to which the Man United and England captain shot back his own criticisms of the way the footballing world continuously reacts in a knee-jerk manner based on “one bad game.”
Rooney, on how he’s unfairly criticized, from the Guardian:
“I’ve had one bad game this season and everyone’s all over it. I know I’ve had that all throughout my career but hopefully at the weekend I can get off the mark.”
“I lost the ball too easily and I’m aware of that. It’s not a game I’ll want to look back on but obviously you have games like that.
“It’s early on in the season. Everyone will write about the end of last season and the beginning of this season [not scoring] but we’re three games into the new season, so it’s down to me to keep going. I’ve experienced this before and the goals will come, I know that, and hopefully that day will come on Saturday against Newcastle.
“I always set myself standards and I try to reach them. My mind’s clear. I know how to play [center forward]. It’s just a case of getting the chances and taking them, which I’m hopeful I’m going to do soon.”
Louis van Gaal backed his talisman earlier this week, while pointing out himself the lunacy of the media and general public’s “very amazing” about-face reactions after a mere two Premier League games.
This has been, of course, simply par for the course throughout Rooney’s entire career. His early days as a brash, volatile character made him an easy target for harsh criticisms and did little to garner any goodwill to be cashed in down the road. His status as England’s “only world-class player”, a moniker thrust upon him by the UK press, does little to relieve any pressure and lift the spotlight from a truly brilliant player. Playing for Man United, big and hated as they are the world over, only helps to incite the peanut gallery and ramp up the hyperbole to a greater degree — both in good times and in bad.
No matter what Rooney does through the remainder of this season, next summer at the 2016 European Championship in France and at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, much of the world — with his own countrymen leading the charge — will remain his harshest and most vitriolic of critics forever and ever.