What Is Wrong With Our Wazza?


By Ben Davies

What is wrong with Wayne Rooney? It is fair to suggest the current Rooney is not the same player of the 2009-10 season, which saw him establish himself as one of the top football stars in the world. What is the reason for his struggles – recent allegations or do his troubles date to the injury sustained against Bayern Munich?

I’m not sure recent allegations are the main reason. Added pressure from media and speculation will no doubt be a hindrance and a factor, but his form was poor before the allegations became public knowledge. Perhaps knowing his off field activities were soon to be revealed weighed heavily on his shoulders and therefore was a mental strain? We are continually told Rooney is not suffering with injuries, but let’s be honest he has not been the same player since he was rushed back for the Manchester United’s second leg encounter with Bayern. His form was poor for the remainder of the season, which continued throughout the World Cup and now in his latest performance against Montenegro.

What are the options – continue selecting Rooney hoping he plays himself into form or allow him a period away removing him from the firing line? I’m erring on the side of the former; he himself has admitted he requires game time. I felt Rooney simply needed a goal to set him on his way. However, his struggles seem beyond the stage where a goal will restore confidence – he has already scored two goals in the current season (Switzerland & West Ham) and we’ve seen no real improvement in his all round game. His first touch remains poor and other aspects of his game are below his normal high standard. The other thought is for Rooney to have a complete break. If Rooney is struggling with niggling injuries – is the smart option for him to have a spell away from the game in the hope he fully recovers?

If you feel Rooney should continue on playing, does he start against West Brom on Saturday? Other strikers are breathing down his neck, Javier Hernandez recently scored for Mexico (with a typical goal poacher’s goal against Venezuela) plus his late winner in the Mestalla. On form Rooney is a clear starter, no contest. However, as things stand does Hernandez or another striker deserve a starting birth? Perhaps a solution is to play Rooney on the left killing two birds with one stone? He has played several games on the left with limited success compared to his normal central role. Personally, I’d be reluctant for him to play on the left, especially in a 4-4-2 formation. Perhaps there is a greater shout for him fulfilling this role in a 4-5-1/4-3-3, where he is allowed greater freedom when Man United are attacking.

His lack of form is perhaps a combination of the injuries suffered and the scandal in his private life. We’ll at some point see the return of Wayne Rooney – he is simply too good. The sooner the better though please Wazza!

If you wish to discuss this issue further with myself or other members of the Stretford End Arising community, you can do so in the Stretford End Arising Forum

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  1. SalfordDreams on

    the main problems are the mental scars left by the Prostitutes Union after blacklisting Rooney.

    perhaps SAF can negotiate/persuade them to rescind their decision?

  2. Die Hard ManU on

    I think he should be benched or given time off to sort himself out. If he wants to leave well so be it, I am sure there’s plenty talent out there than to concentrate on one player who is letting ManU down at the moment and I am sure it’s becoming frustrating for us all….

  3. If his lack of form is all down to his off field activities then I don’t have any sympathy. Strange that someone with such a high profile would think he could get away with prostitute visits – silly boy.
    If its injury that is causing it then we have to be very careful and not make things worse. SAF says he is happy with his squad so now is the time to prove that our strikers are up for the task and give Rooney the break he would need to overcome the injury

  4. I think he needs a proper rest. He’s always rushed back from these niggling injuries and it’s doing more harm than good. He clearly hasn’t been right since the Bayern game. I’d rest him against WBA. I was annoyed that Capello picked him for England as I would’ve like to have seen him rested for that.

  5. I told my match-going pal (&GU blog) last season that “sooner rather than later OT will realise what a gem we have in Dimitar Berbatov and realise that Rooney is grossly overrated” (at present time).

    In short, we have had to live with the false notion (IMHO) that Rooney is the far superior forward player, perhaps functioning at 18.5 / 20, whilst Berbatov operates at say 12 / 20. In reality in the last 2 seasons, it has probably been 16 / 20 and 15 / 20 respectively.

    In essence all we have seen this term so far is Berba push further forward and enjoy his new-found fitness (thus more goals) pushing his performance levels to around 17 whilst Rooney has suffered from a) ankle injury and b) emotional trauma on the home front, dropping him down to say 14 or 15.

    There is no doubt Rooney isnt himself right now, but this media overreaction is fascinating IMO. The ‘Rooney Complex’ that has long been a symptom of a Cantona-depirved Old Trafford has become a victim of its own excess: The talismanic ‘working-class hero’ has hit a brick-wall, but his poor form is not the fall from grace many would have us believe. I am firmly of the opinion hel be back to his best very soon indeed; back to the top player we know he is, a top player who, at age 24 (25 in 2 weeks) has a hell of a lot to learn and more unearthed talent within him to become the ‘World Class’ player we often portray him to be at present….

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