The future of Wayne Rooney has been up in the air since the English forward submitted a transfer request at the tail end of last season. Chelsea’s returnee manager and now ‘Happy One’, Jose Mourinho has further raised the dust by urging the Manchester United striker to quit Old Trafford if that will give him joy.
“I think he is at a fantastic age for a player: maturity, big experience, still young,” the Portuguese told reporters. “It’s up to him and what he wants, what makes him happy. He’s a little bit like me: he doesn’t need one more pound in his contract. One more cup won’t make a difference. Be happy. Where is he happy? Where will he find more happiness to have ambition and drive him? I like him as a boy. I wish him well and hope he is happy.”
Where should he go if he is granted United exit? The England striker has been linked with Arsenal, City, Chelsea and PSG but going by Mourinho’s statement (he doesn’t need one more pound in his contract. One more cup won’t make a difference.), seems money and trophies won’t be determining factors.
Of all the clubs vying for his signature, Arsenal are the least of the moneybags and have a penny-pincher as manager. If the race to sign him gets down to the wire, a transfer war, the Gunners are sure to loose out. Neither can they offer him the highest wages. PSG have been rumoured to offer him 350k Pounds weekly wages while Chelsea and City have players on huge wages unlike Arsenal that have the highest paid on 110k Pounds per week. Doubt if Arsenal can also win the wages war.
Coming to trophies, the Gunners are the least successful in recent seasons. No trophy in 8 years unlike Chelsea, City and PSG that have all won laurels.
What then can Arsenal offer him to make him happy? His unhappiness is stemmed from the fact that he is no longer the leading light at Old Trafford and that he can be at the Emirates. He wants to be the creme dela creme in the club. He has lost that to Van Persie at Manchester United while he can never get that Chelsea owing to Mourinho’s larger than life ego. At PSG, he has the ego of Ibrahimovic to contend with.
He wants to play as a center forward. He has already lost that role to Van Persie at United and with Chelsea very interested in Cavani and Hulk, he might not get the opportunity there too. At PSG, there is also Ibrahimovic who is their marquee striker. Will Ibra drop deep or to the bench for Rooney? I doubt it. At Arsenal, the chances are very high. Arsenal have only one natural striker (Giroud) and his role is not certain yet. If a better striker comes in, he could loose his starting berth. Hence, they can make do with another prolific striker and with the Gunners spoilt for choice in midfield, Rooney won’t have to play deep.
Financial inducements and quest for glory might not be good enough to lure him to the Emirates but his search for inner happiness might just drive him to the Emirates.