Wayne Rooney's time at Manchester United could be coming to an end, but before fans become teary-eyed, they should know that it's for the best. Now is the perfect time for United to sell Rooney and focus their attention elsewhere.
Rooney came to Old Trafford in 2004, and he has had tremendous success at the club. His goals, assists and leadership were all key parts of his tenure. Undoubtedly, he will go down as one of the greatest Reds to ever wear the Manchester United jersey.
But his services are no longer needed.
After having Ferguson at the helm for 26 years, the transition will be unfamiliar, and United's hierarchy will want it to go as smoothly as possible.
But it will not be easy if Rooney is still playing for the team.
Before Rooney moved to Manchester United, his manager at Everton was David Moyes, and the two did not end on good terms.
Moyes successfully sued Rooney over statements that the striker had made in his autobiography, My Story So Far. The player had written that Moyes was controlling, overbearing and the reason he left Everton.
It is difficult to think the two can put this all behind them and pretend it has never happened. It did happen, and with Moyes now his manager again, it puts them both in an awkward situation.
With Moyes in, Rooney most likely prefers to be out. And according to Ben Smith of BBC Sport, that's exactly what he wants. Rooney supposedly told Manchester United that he would like to be transferred two weeks ago.
He no longer wants to be a Red Devil, and this is completely fine. Manchester United does not need Wayne Rooney, and Wayne Rooney doesn't need United.
Although Rooney is still a fantastic player, he is no longer as good as he once was.
Ferguson must have noticed this, since Rooney saw the pitch less this season. The team did not depend on him as much as it once did.
Rooney played in only 27 matches this season and came off the bench in five of those. He scored 12 goals and had 10 assists. Not bad stats if one is a fringe player, but Rooney isn't nor does he deserve to be treated as such.
Last season, the striker played in 34 Premier League matches and was only subbed into two of those. He also scored 27 goals and had four assists.
He was the star man, and one of the first names on the team sheet.
But with the addition of Robin van Persie, Rooney fell to the side and was no longer Ferguson's first choice striker.
In what was to be United's final UEFA Champions League game this season, many were shocked to see him start on the bench. He didn't enter the match until the 73rd minute, and once on the field, he didn't make much of a difference. United begrudgingly bowed out of the tournament 2-1.
This was the beginning of the Rooney exit rumors, but Ferguson and Manchester United were quick to quash them. They stated that the striker will be a United player next season and will not be sold.
This was in March.
Fast forward two months, and everything has changed. The exit of Ferguson and the addition of Moyes has brought fresh rumors.
United is easing him out. The parts are already there for his replacement, and the transition can go smoothly.
A move to any of those teams will bode well for Rooney. They will be able to use his talent far more than United has this season.
The club can also use the money gained from a Rooney transfer. Many fans would love to see the return of beloved former Red Devil Cristiano Ronaldo, but he will not come cheaply. If United sells Rooney, the money will help in a major way.
Manchester United fans are thankful for Rooney's time at Old Trafford, and most likely will wish him luck outside of the Premier League.
He was a fantastic player and came up big at opportune times. He was revered and respected, but they know his time has come. Wayne Rooney should be sold.
Whether or not Rooney and Moyes have buried the hatchet and can work together civilly does not matter.
United should not risk it. This storyline will follow the team around for as long as Rooney is a member of the squad.
The best thing Manchester United can do is sell Wayne Rooney. This should be David Moyes's first act as the new manager if he wants to start his tenure off on the right foot.
The Rooney transfer saga will be a distraction until it's dealt with. The faster it is taken care of, the quicker both sides can get back to their successful ways.