Rooney stops playing to take Derby manager job permanently
All-time record scorer for England and Manchester United. A haul of 16 trophies. Wayne Rooney's illustrious playing career is over. The former England and United captain has decided it's time to focus on trying to replicate
London : All-time record scorer for England and Manchester United. A haul of 16 trophies. Wayne Rooney's illustrious playing career is over. The former England and United captain has decided it's time to focus on trying to replicate his successes as a striker in management. After taking temporary charge of Derby in November — as a player-coach — the 35-year-old Rooney has accepted the manager's job on a permanent basis with the second division club through 2023.
"It's a great feeling to go into management full-time," Rooney said on Friday. "It's something that I've been preparing for, working for a few years now. Obviously had a taste of it over the last couple of months and I've enjoyed it."
Rooney has enjoyed three victories and four draws in his nine games at the helm of Derby, which remains in the relegation zone. It's been 13 years since Derby played in the Premier League — a competition Rooney won five times after joining United from Everton at age 18 along with tasting glory in the Champions League, FA Cup, League Cup, Club World Cup and Community Shield.
"I've had a great career, I've enjoyed every minute," Rooney said. "Some ups, some downs, I wouldn't change anything I've done in my career as a player." It was often a tempestuous playing career, with the fiery Rooney embroiled in controversies in his private life and hot-headedness in games.
It is experience he will be able to draw on while nurturing future talents. At United, Rooney worked under the greatest British manager of all-time in Alex Ferguson.
With England, he witnessed more of the instabilities of coaching as a talented group of players never came close to winning a trophy. "Hopefully I can now start to write some history and have a successful managerial career," Rooney said.
Rooney, just like at United with his 253 goals, overtook 1966 World Cup winner Bobby Charlton as England's record scorer by netting 53 times in 120 appearances — the last in 2018 at Wembley Stadium against the United States. "He did it all," former United and England teammate Rio Ferdinand said.