When talk broke that Wayne Rooney may be dissatisfied at old Trafford, and with the imminent arrival of his old adversary David Moyes on the horizon, the usual suspect list of clubs thought to be interested in gaining the striker’s services were lined up.
Headed by oil-rich PSG and Chelsea, the list also included the noisy neighbours from across the city, the Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona, and Bayern munich. Oh yes, and I think someone mentioned Arsenal. Yes they did, and yes people laughed at the time. Arsenal, with their reluctance spend? Aresenal with their hallowed salary policy? Do me a favour! Well,if recent reports are to be believed, the laughing needs to stop.
With another trophy-less season behind them, it appears that the hierarchy at the club have realised that if they want to truly compete for the big trophies, and threaten to win the league again, drastic measures are required. Now, for a stellar signing like Rooney, the rusted-up hinges on the Arsenal war chest of transfer funds are going to be oiled. Reports suggest that the current top earner at the club is Theo Walcott, with a wage of £90,000 per week. Now to us mere mortals this is wealth beyond avarice, but in the modern football world, it’s not going to draw in the stars required by Arsenal, hence the loosening of the purse strings to allow Wenger to compete at the top table of world talent.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Why would Rooney go to Arsenal? PSG or Bayern offer more glamour and chances for European glory. City would doubtless top his United salary, and he wouldn’t even have to move house. Even if he fancied the bright lights of London, Chelsea could well be a better option. What none of these clubs have however is the ace that Arsenal hold. Without doubt, Sir Alex Ferguson has brought Rooney’s talent out of him. The disciplinarian approach has, until recently perhaps, been the thing that has kept the famous Rooney temper in check allowing the player to display the full array of his skills. Now, there isn’t another Fergie out there, but of all of the managers that he could play under at the clubs mentioned, none come nearer to that ideal than Arsene Wenger.
Now, it’s entirely possible, and in my eyes the most likely outcome, that Rooney stays at Old Trafford, but, if he does move, Arsenal will have a realistic chance of landing the player, and that is the statement of intent that the club needed to make.
Arsene Wenger is ready to smash Arsenal’s wage structure to bring in a stellar signing like Wayne Rooney.
The Arsenal hierarchy will back Wenger not just in terms of big money for transfers but also for contracts and they are capable of competing to sign Rooney. Gunners boss Wenger’s top earner is Theo Walcott on £90,000-a-week-plus and Arsenal can push their boundaries well beyond £150,000-a-week for the right player.