Wayne Rooney
England

  • Full name Wayne Rooney
  • Birth date October 24, 1985
  • Birth place Liverpool
  • Current age 28 years 182 days
  • Height 5 ft 10 in
Wayne Rooney
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After expressing his desire to leave Manchester United during 2010, Rooney went on to rediscover his love for the club - and has now won over sceptical fans.

The striker has been firmly in the spotlight since first breaking into the England side aged 17 and has the potential to stay at the top of the game for years to come.

Having worked his way through the Everton academy, a 16-year-old Rooney shot to the world's attention with a stunning goal against Arsenal in 2002 and showed skill beyond his years before Manchester United signed him for around £30 million after the 2004 European Championships - in which he had played a starring role.

The powerful frontman made an immediate impact with a hat-trick on his debut - a Champions League victory over Fenerbache in September 2004 - and went on to help United to three straight Premier League titles between 2006-2009, while also collecting numerous personal awards.

The 2009-10 season represented the pinnacle of Rooney's goalscoring career to date, as he plundered 34 goals in 42 games in all competitions for United. Cristiano Ronaldo's departure to Real Madrid allowed Rooney to flourish as he became the focal point of the Old Trafford attack, and he spearheaded United's forward line in style. Rooney scored the winning goal in the 2010 Carling Cup final and though United missed out on domestic and European glory, he was rewarded for an impressive campaign with the PFA Players' Player of the Year Award.

In September 2008, Rooney became the youngest player in league history to make 200 appearances but after poor form and a tabloid scandal after the 2010 World Cup, he admitted he wanted to leave Manchester United. It took just three days for him to perform a U-turn though, committing his future to the club until 2015 amid a media melee.

He went on to strike up a formidable partnership with Javier Hernandez as United clinched the Premier League crown, but despite his second-best season in terms of goals scored in 2011-12 he could not prevent the Premier League title from heading across Manchester to Man City.

A red card in England's final Euro 2012 qualifier landed Rooney a two-game ban which ruled out of group-stage matches against France and Sweden. He returned to score the only goal of the game against Ukraine to secure England's passage to the knockout stages, but his performance in their exit at the hands of italy led to fresh criticism about his application and fitness.

The arrival of Robin van Persie from Arsenal ahead of the 2012-13 season seemed to meet Rooney's requests that United match the likes of City and Chelsea in the transfer market, but he could not have anticipated the impact it would have on his own role in the team.

Relations between himself and Ferguson reached a new low when the England striker was left out of United squad to face Real Madrid in the knockout stages of the Champions League. United reclaimed the Premier League, but it later emerged that an increasingly marginalised Rooney had handed in a transfer request. Ferguson, following his final appearance at Old Trafford, revealed the request had been rejected, urging Rooney to think about his future.

Strengths: Powerful and strong on the ball, Rooney's ability to pick a pass, shoot from distance and unselfishly work for the team is unparalleled in world football. His passion can never been called into question.

Weaknesses: He suffers when the red mist descends and has a propensity to lose his cool in key games. Sometimes an impetuous customer, prone to easy frustration.

Career high: His stunning debut hat-trick for Manchester United is a strong contender, but it cannot top being named as the best player in the country by his fellow professionals, as he scooped the PFA Players' Player of the Year Award in for the 2009-10 season.

Career low: Being sent off against Portugal in the 2006 World Cup for stamping on a rather delicate area of Ricardo Carvalho's body, after working so hard to be fit for the tournament following a metatarsal injury.

Style: Powerful, hard-working, passionate; an unselfish superstar.

Quotes: "We all know football players at the top level are blessed with high wages, it's no secret. But Rooney would play for 100 euros-a-week. You can see the fire in his eyes. It's that fire which makes him the best of the best." 2009 World Player of the Year Lionel Messi praises Rooney's passion.

Trivia: Rooney has "Just Enough Education To Perform" tattooed on his right forearm. The line is the title of an album by his favourite band, The Stereophonics.

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Aug 26, 2013

David Moyes and Wayne Rooney shake hands

Aug 26, 2013

Ashley Cole and Wayne Rooney keep their eyes on the ball

Aug 26, 2013

Ashley Cole and Wayne Rooney fight for the ball

Aug 17, 2013

David Moyes congratulates Wayne Rooney

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