Premier League: Do Rooney and Suarez Prove Player Power Is Too Prevalent?

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Premier League: Do Rooney and Suarez Prove Player Power Is Too Prevalent?
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

It's getting easier and easier to get what you want as a footballer, as evidenced by two high-profile transfer sagas that look like running the length of the 2012-13 summer window.

A trend has been set, and that trend spells increasing danger for club footballing hierarchies worldwide should their current employees become disgruntled and begin itching for a move.

Gone are the days where an owner can say "you're not for sale" and it actually means something, with Wayne Rooney and Luis Suarez essentially choosing to ignore those four fateful words.

Manchester United have played their hand with Rooney superbly, keeping it simple in public and telling the world he will remain a Manchester United player.

Michael Regan/Getty Images

On July 5, David Moyes confirmed to the BBC that the former Everton man was not for sale. Fourteen days later, he did the very same thing to the BBC after Jose Mourinho publicly announced he wanted Rooney in Chelsea blue.

The Daily Telegraph have today confirmed a second bid of £30 million has been rejected for Rooney's services. Manchester United took the opportunity to announce—yes, you guessed it—that the player is not for sale.

Rooney is "angry and confused," but the Red Devils' hierarchy won't care: As far as they're concerned, they're retaining a world-class player who they pay a rather large sum of money every year to get on with what he does best.

Moyes and Rooney have a fractious relationship, probably down to the fact that Moyes once sued Rooney for libelous comments in his biography My Story So Far.

But that doesn't make the current situation—that of Moyes being manager and Rooney being player at the same club—any less real, and Rooney should know that when United get rid of a star player, they do so to a place where their capacity to haunt them is limited.

Cristiano Ronaldo and David Beckham to Real Madrid are prime examples.

The Suarez situation is more complicated due to a contractual dispute, but the essence of it remains the same: Liverpool have said, via the BBC, that the player is not for sale, but the player is having absolutely none of it.

Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

There's talk of "gentlemen's agreements" being broken (h/t The Mirror) and a head-to-head on what a certain clause in his contract actually means, given it's "open for interpretation." (h/t Metro).

The Liverpool Echo confirmed Arsenal's bid of £40,000,001—the figure the Gunners believed to be the Uruguayan's release clause—has been rejected, with the Reds suggesting the price to get him will be in excess of £50 million.

This could end up in the Court of Arbitration for Sport, as the two parties will argue all day long about what the clause truly entitles the player to do.

But the main takeaway, as fans looking at the bigger picture, is that once again players are doing absolutely everything they can to exit the situation they themselves signed up for.

What's the point in a four-year contract these days?

Robert Lewandowski told Polish newspaper Rzeczpospolita, via Sky Sports, that he feels "cheated" by Borussia Dortmund for not letting him join Bayern Munich.

Despite the fact that he signed a contract committing himself to BVB until the summer of 2014, he's hurt and disappointed his club won't allow him to go back on his own decision.

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While that can be frustrating, he's getting absolutely no sympathy, and the fact that he's complaining about it in public is only making it worse for him.

It's a sign of where fans think the power lays when, as Christian Benteke handed in a transfer request at Aston Villa, people were immediately creating their XIs to include him in a Spurs shirt.

The Belgian was widely expected to leave—be it peacefully or forcefully—and sometimes it takes a club like Villa, Dortmund, United or Liverpool to put players in their place.

Above all else, the fact that Rooney is still angling for a departure, missing tours due to "shoulder injuries" and getting upset that he has to see out a £250,000-per-week contract is an absolute travesty, and represents an indicator that player power is getting completely out of hand.

It's prevalent in the English Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Ligue 1 and many more, with clubs seemingly becoming less and less able to influence the outcome by the season.

 

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