Can Captain Rooney take United to new heights?
Wayne Rooney was announced as Manchester United's latest captain earlier this week. It caps an interesting time for the Liverpudlian who has not always had the best of times at Old Trafford. Football fans are divided on how good Wayne Rooney really is and this debate reached new heights when he secured his latest contract back in February which reportedly saw him sign a five and a half year deal at £300,000 a week. A deal that will net him an incredible £85M+ over the course of his contract.
He is by far the highest paid player in the Premiership - a cool £60,000 a week more than his nearest rival Yaya Toure and £75,000 a week more than what his strike partner Robin Van Persie gets.
So what qualities can people expect to see from Wayne in his new role as captain? Well, this is new territory for Rooney but he has obviously impressed Louis Van Gaal sufficiently to allow Van Gaal to believe that he is the right man to lead Manchester United forward in this new era. There are the obvious questions around his temperament although to be fair there has not been the usual signs of petulance in recent seasons so this suggests the 28-year old is finally beginning to mellow as he reaches his footballing prime.
Van Gaal was not exactly blessed with many alternatives in relation to who should be the new captain. Fletcher was a possible candidate and this illustrated by the fact he has been given the vice captaincy. Van Persie was captain whilst at Arsenal so must have also been a consideration. Carrick would have also been in contention, but ultimately Van Gaal believes Rooney is the man to lead the United team from the front.
Rooney works hard for the team and will no doubt set an excellent example to all his team-mates. There will be no room for passengers that is for sure. United's fixture list has been incredibly kind to them. There first real test will not come until they face Everton and Chelsea in October so they will have a really good chance to set the pace in the title race. If things do not go accordingly in these relatively easy opening matches Van Gaal may have to reconsider his captaincy options?
Article author Fevzi Hussein can be followed on Twitter @fevzihussein
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