After some time in the discussion, Wayne Rooney has finally announced his retirement from professional football to continue in the game as a manager. And with this, we see the ending of one of the most successful careers in the history of British football and one of the most iconic footballers in the last two decades.
Wayne Rooney is not only an outstanding footballer that won pretty much everything of significance at club level with Manchester United, but he is also one of the most iconic players in the game. A kid that doesn’t know much about football still knows who Wayne Rooney is. Wayne Rooney is that big.
And this week, Rooney has announced his retirement from professional football focus to fully focus on his new role as Derby County’s manager in the Championship and keep them away from relegation. He was serving in player/coach capacity, but he has stated that is a role he can no longer maintain. We could spend lots of hours talking about his records, his achievements and all the trophies Wayne Rooney has won throughout the years in one of the most accomplished careers of British football, but the reality is much greater than that: Wayne Rooney was a player that could mark people’s lives.
At the end of the day, football fans don’t love the game because of the trophies or the records. They love the moments of joy, the intensity and the passion of the game. This was Rooney in a nutshell: sheer intensity, passion and quality in a single man. He was fire and blood turned into a footballer.
How many players and fans have stated that they got into football because of Wayne Rooney? How many people all over the world know Manchester United because of Wayne Rooney? How many of them shaped their football knowledge based on England’s bad boy?