There were the usual rumours surrounding Wayne Rooney, when it was suggested that he wanted away from Manchester United, especially as Sir Alex Ferguson actually admitted that he had asked for a transfer only two weeks before announcing his retirement from the club. There was an immediate glut of rumours from Manchester City, to Chelsea and then beyond into Europe.
As regards Europe, we now know that both Real Madrid and Barcelona were sounded out about Rooney during the earlier part of this year, but both clubs made it clear that he was not the sort of player they were looking for. We then heard that it was Bayern Munich, but just this week, their president has stated that they have no interest in Rooney.
That now leaves Manchester City and Chelsea, but with both having a change of manager at the end of this season, there is little interest in Rooney from either of their camps. However, there has been an astounding revelation today from an unlikely source; the SportsDirect website.
For those who do now know, SportsDirect is the company owned by Mike Ashley, who also happens to be the owner of Newcastle United. On their website, it clearly states:-
“Newcastle sees Wayne as their ideal player.
“He’s a strong centre-forward, would relate to the fans and would be a massive boost to the club’s brand name."
Despite this, the source admits: “Low-level conversations have already been held between Newcastle and Rooney’s agent, though the two clubs haven’t spoken directly yet.”
It's not the first time Newcastle have tried to buy Rooney - they made a bid for him in 2004 when he was at Everton, but the then 18-year-old chose Manchester United instead. My insiders at Manchester United have laughed off the story as a ruse to get more Newcastle fans to buy season tickets!
My take on this and other stories, from my inside sources at Old Trafford are that Rooney has been taken aback by the lack of interested parties in him, especially the flat refusal of interest from the two La Liga giants. He thought that Bayern would be a good fit, but they have also said no thanks! It leaves Rooney in a poor negotiating position and he would be well advised to take Gary Neville's advice and go on tour with England, then go away on holiday and have a rethink about his attitude.
If he does force his way out of Old Trafford, the only way is down especially as it appears that not many clubs are really that bothered.