Wayne Rooney: 250 goals. Sir Bobby Charlton, the great, Sir Bobby; a man who everyone – not just Manchester United fans – regard as a genuine legend of the game, a genuine Demigod for what the former Red Devils captain has given football. But there’s now a man who has surpassed all that, and should be just as respected across all fan bases.
Rooney, as of this weekend against Stoke, has quite literally, done all that, and got the t-shirt. The current United captain has exceeded all the records set, won everything under the sun at club level, but England – the dreaded national team – is a slightly different story. The English public don’t care that the No. 10 is the country’s greatest ever goalscorer, because he hasn’t delivered any major silverware. How much is this Rooney’s fault? It’s all his fault, apparently. It’s all on Wayne’s shoulders; forever criticised, forever questioned and forever in the spotlight.
'He's a disgrace & a joke!' – Rooney slammed for night out https://t.co/dI25I8bh5x
— Soccer.Mu (@mfltv) November 16, 2016
With everything the former Everton man has achieved, we call him out more for what he hasn’t achieved. We go as far as knocking him off his pedestal, as much that we idolise the likes of Thierry Henry over our national captain. Did Henry stay as loyal to Arsenal as Rooney to United? Did Henry reach 250 club goals? Did the media condemn the Frenchman to public humiliation for his legs tiring at the age of 30?
Of course not; Henry’s suave, a gentleman, loyal and well groomed. So loyal that he’s assistant manager to one of his nation’s greatest rivals and not to mention *that* incredibly honest handball.
Rooney has a beer: media acts as if drinking is more frowned upon in the UK than in the Middle East. Rooney plays poorly: literally taken apart by any form of social media platform. Rooney’s phone gets hacked: has Stella Artois as his password, Rooney is a ‘raging yob and wife beater’. Had Henry had the latter as his password, the beverage company would have probably used it as a marketing tool.
News of the World hacking trial reveals Wayne Rooney voicemail password was 'Stella Artois'……& there are some who think he's illiterate!
— Alfie (@AlfieHeydrich) November 17, 2013
At the end of the day, just because Henry brings in a bit of the va-va-voom, looks good, and was a world-class player, the British public bow down to him.
But what about all the British values; modesty, self-deprecation, and lack of vanity? Yes, Wazza Roo has had hair implants, but who could blame the lad? We don’t see much modesty and lack of vanity coming out of Henry’s locker – The Times only reported this year how the guy has his own personalised hangers. Sky Sports even had to replace one through a £500 investment, as his ‘special one’ went missing. We’re talking about a hanger here, a clothes hanger.
Instead, the modesty in the Rooney family still comes from his mum working at her local school as a dinner lady, and the time Rooney went to play with his mates by a garage door after scoring *that* goal for Everton; ironically, it was against Arsenal.
“Remember the name”…
Always remember your beginnings: I am not a Man U supporter nor a Rooney but must acknowledge and congratulate… https://t.co/zyIbhkUfEd
— LLEWELLYN WILLIAMS (@SIRZONE) January 22, 2017
Can we please, please just all really think about what Rooney has done this weekend – and his whole career. The guy is 31, and still even has more to offer; look how the captain changed the game recently both against Liverpool and Stoke. That hanger – sorry, hunger – is still there. Achieving the record has probably taken a weight off his shoulders. He’s done enough to go out there, and express himself.
The media needs to appreciate, Wayne. It would be an utter tragedy if we only realised what we had, until we lost him; we fear this expression could become all too likely five years down the line.
It’s funny, as soon as Wayne has done the most memorable feat of breaking the Manchester United record – the expression: “Remember the name” could not be more apt at this moment in time.