Wayne Rooney or Juan Mata at Manchester United?

On 17th July there was a rumour that Manchester United had rejected an approach from Chelsea for England’s frontman, Wayne Rooney.

On 17th July there was a rumour that Manchester United had rejected an approach from Chelsea for England’s frontman, Wayne Rooney. The alleged offer from the London side was £10 million plus Juan Mata.

This offer in my opinion was going to benefit Manchester United as it would help rid the club of not only the English international’s large wages, but of a player who has often thought he is bigger than the club.

Too big for his boots?

In 2010 Rooney handed in his first transfer request that was rebuffed by the club, and Sir Alex Ferguson persuaded the clubs star striker to sign a new five-year contract worth £220,000 per week. Rooney has played second fiddle to new signing Robin van Persie for much of the last season. Rooney netted twice in the Manchester Derby at the Etihad, but most fans remember the match winning free kick in the last minute by Van Persie more than his contribution.

The most telling image of his fall out of favour was finding himself relegated to the bench for the first leg of the crucial Champions League tie with Real Madrid in favour of Danny Welbeck. This is the first test of the David Moyes era at Old Trafford, and if he can help to keep the mantra that was set by Ferguson that nobody is bigger than the club, then he will come out of this saga in great shape.

Moreover Juan Mata has just finished the best season of his career in a marathon season for Chelsea. The creative midfielder played in 53 games this season for club and country. The Spanish international did not only provide a high number of assists this season 22 in total, but he also found the back of the net 17 times this season.

The special one

Juan Mata was named as Chelsea’s player of the year, but it appears that he does not seem to be in the plans of returning Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, and the ‘Special One’ can use his departure to sign a player he has shown a long admiration for.

This deal would have also benefited Chelsea, as they have already missed out on two of their main transfer targets Edinson Cavani to PSG and Radamel Falcao to Monaco. Rooney would add a world class striking option, to add to the underperforming Fernando Torres, Demba Ba, and the impressive Romelu Lukaku. Rooney would add a stronger physical presence than either Ba or Torres, and has incredible football intelligence to help link up with Eden Hazard and bring the best out of their other attacking options.

Chelsea have already added Andre Schürrle from Bayern Leverkusen who can operate out wide, a position where Mata currently operates, and the sale of the Spaniard could help spur the development of the young German international. The Chelsea also have Oscar and Victor Moses who can play in the position that Mata plays meaning Mata is possibly surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge.

Overpaid and Underperformed

Rooney was judged to have underperformed last season at Old Trafford last season despite reaching double figures in both goals and assists. This shows the quality that the English striker possesses, and if Mourinho can bring that out of him, there is no doubt he is one of the best players in world football.

However it is debated whether Rooney can return to the form he has shown, or is he in decline as a footballer, whereas Mata could be coming into his peak years as a footballer, and could inspire Manchester United to many more years of success.

This will be an interesting transfer saga to follow throughout the rest of the summer, and could help shape the title chase next season.

What do you think? How will this affect the future of Wayne Rooney’s football career? Have your say in the comments section below, on Facebook or on Twitter.