Sir Alex Ferguson: Wayne Rooney turned Manchester United down twice

by Sid Choudhary

Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed that Wayne Rooney twice refused to join the Reds from Everton.

Rooney signed for Man United in 2004 at just 18 years of age, making him the most expensive teenager in history at the time.

He made his debut in professional football aged just 16 at Everton and Ferguson has now claimed that, if United got their way, Rooney would have been playing at Old Trafford much sooner than he did.

The legendary manager commented on the process he and his staff went through in order to secure the services of the current United captain.

Speaking about Rooney, Sir Alex said: “[Youth coach] Jim Ryan came back from one of our academy games at the 14 years level and he said ‘I’ve seen a player’ and he said that the boy is Wayne Rooney.

Despite scouting the Englishman at such a young age, Rooney still did not want to leave his boyhood club.

Fergie added: “The boy wanted to stay at Everton – at that time he had a love of the club and he is an Everton fan. When he got to 16 we tried again. We approached him to join, but once again he refused.

“Then I think that everyone saw the highlights when he scored that goal against Arsenal. It confirmed exactly what Jim Ryan had said. This boy was going to be a United player.”

Since signing for the Reds, Rooney has been a phenomenon who is almost sure to break the long-standing goalscoring record of Sir Bobby Charlton. He has gone on to captain England as well and could become the country’s leading goal-scorer as early as this weekend.

Rooney, 29, has had an indifferent start to this season but Ferguson knows as well as anyone that the man from Croxteth in Liverpool can bounce back and show the world what he is all about once again.

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