Protection Or Detention? Rooney's Omission Signals Tension With Ferguson

Pav MandairCorrespondent IOctober 18, 2010

Growing tension: Is Rooney and Fergie's  father and son bond deteriorating
Growing tension: Is Rooney and Fergie's father and son bond deterioratingAlex Livesey/Getty Images

Riches, riches, riches; though it may sound like the gifts gave by the three kings to baby Jesus when he was first born in Christianity than a Footballers Wives or Dream Team parody of modern football but it is mere understatement of what bears fruit to a footballer when filling their  job description………

…………but what exactly is their job description? Just turning up for training on weekdays and then playing on the weekend? Far from it, as a footballer there are all types responsibilities under their obligation.  Aside from their contractual obligations there are other matters most notably their upholding task of being a role model to a global community of children. Most manage it but the mortals that don’t face uproar from the general public. However, with the millions being transferred into their bank account from the clubs willing to pay, do they really care about the inability to fulfill their tasks such as lack of form or their responsibilities towards children? 

One, individual the public positively segregate from this is one Wayne Rooney.  Many from his birthplace in Croxteth to people around the world will vouch for the bellowed opinion that Wayne Rooney‘s only investment in football is emotional.  However, despite his glowing rapport with the sport and the way it is transformed for his club Manchester United, does that makes him exempt from his alleged extracurricular activities? Ever since his alleged adultery of his wife Colleen Rooney came seeping through the surface into the public eye, the balance of care has been shifted between Wayne Rooney’s state of mind and the image he portrays.  Throughout this furor this prompted Sir Alex Ferguson to omit him from first team duties stating "We made a decision simply because he gets terrible abuse here. We don't want to subject him to that," however in the wake of their 3-3 draw with Everton, Rooney’s omission’s affect on the team was highlighted. Manchester United’s defensive frailties were very poor in regards to their declined lead but the difference Rooney could have made may have been poignant in regards to the result. Ever since Wayne Rooney’s departure from Goodison Park in 2004 his treatment when returning to Everton has not been gracious, but this has not stopped him or any player being omitted from their respective squads due to opposite fans affections. In retrospect, Sir Alex’s teams over the years have featured many iconic figures that have plausibly had iconic roles in Manchester United’s success however any noncompliance with the saying “Don’t cross the Boss” has resulted in their omission or even departures from the club. This indeed maybe another case of the Govan born Scot’s ruthless disciplinary procedure. Sir Alex Ferguson has always liked to maintain a stringent policy based on autocratic methods where he is in charge and the players are delegated instructions with their only response being taking the instructions and no arguing their respective case. However any form of disagreement or discontent has been met with consequences. Wayne Rooney’s omission is nothing new; Ferguson left David Beckham on the bench at Elland Road against bitter rivals Leeds when tensions heated up, is this autocratic De Ja Vu?

Back in 2001 Jaap Stam made some controversial comments in his autobiography that allegedly caused some friction with his boss. This led to the sale of Sir Alex’s prominent centre back to debt laden Lazio for £16.5m. Sir Alex Ferguson looking back in retrospect stated the following for his actions "At the time he had just come back from an Achilles injury and we thought he had just lost a little bit. We got the offer from Lazio, £16.5m for a centre-back who was 29. It was an offer I couldn't refuse. But in playing terms it was a mistake. He is still playing for Ajax at a really good level.”  Comparing this to his actions when omitting Rooney from the match against Everton the situation is very similar; Jaap Stam bought the club into disrepute with his comments and was punished, only to Ferguson’s regret. Rooney also allegedly bought the club into disrepute and was punished at United’s peril by dropping two vital points. situations cost Manchester United with United losing the Premier League the following season; the two dropped against Everton could cost them dearly seeing as they only needed two extra points to overhaul Chelsea last season and their arch rivals Liverpool in the process.  Ruud Van Nistelrooy also made his discontent vocal, is wasn’t long before he was shown the Old Trafford exit door despite his prolific resume and becoming the fastest foreign goal scorer in a debut season in the Premier League at the time.  David Beckham’s ever growing commercial appeal which still exists today did not mirror Ferguson’s philosophy, who perennially failed to understand the furor of his celebrity status. After observing its growth, Ferguson saw fit to dispose of Beckham after feeling his status had become bigger than the club. Roy Keane saw fit to ignite a temperamental slander of his teammates after a shocking 4-1 defeat against Middleborough.  This followed growing tension with Sir Alex Ferguson in pre season, which culminated with him stating he would welcome a departure once his contract expired. The fact that these comments had been done with United’s in house TV station showed even more widespread exposure over his and Fergie’s growing friction. And once again another focal member of United’s team was shown the door by Ferguson after the failure to adhere. 

International week steamrolled around again and Wayne Rooney had been included in the England squad again. This is after weeks have transpired where Wayne Rooney has been constantly omitted from Manchester United’s squad with an “ankle injury”.  In a game where England disappointed, Rooney was another chastised member of a poor England side, showing just how poor his confidence had decreased. Wayne Rooney then publically came out stating his ankle was fine. Could this be the head rolling statement of Rooney’s meteoric career?  Sir Alex Ferguson said this to protect Rooney, his failure to abide by the same sentiment shows that Rooney believes he knows more than Ferguson and took things into his own hands; and judging by the state of his private life he isn’t capable. Wayne Rooney has had the Miley Cyrus growth spurt to his career. She grew up very quick and so did Rooney’s career. At 24 Years Old he has already settled down into a family environment, played in two World Cups and won various trophies.  You would forget that he is still learning his trade, despite accumulating a vast amount of experience.  This is why Sir Alex Ferguson is still nurturing him and making the decisions what he feels is best for Rooney.  With Sir Alex Ferguson’s long tenure in the game, you would think he would know the best form of jurisdiction for Rooney; therefore he must adhere to his boss’s way of direction for his own benefit. However, Rooney is showing the traits of the typical, brash cocky upstart that attains delusional beliefs that he upholds a superior knowledge to his elders.  If Wayne Rooney wants to commercialize himself and his family to public domain, does he really think that when dark clouds beckon the media will not scrutinize his life  and not highlight his off field troubles. He cannot take the money and live in media immunity, as all Celebrities can relate to; you have to take the rough with the smooth. There is no dissecting of what part of his life is shown, if he chooses to expose a positive feature of his life, his negative side will automatically follow suit mirroring media interest equally, just like two matching cards in a game of Snap. Does Rooney really believe that the coverage of him scoring a goal is not interesting to public domain as much as falling out of a nightclub at 3am or smoking? Dwight Yorke had his critics for his playboy lifestyle while at United.  Whatever, Rooney does it will always gain prominent coverage as his media affiliation has helped garner that interest. If you eat a chocolate cookie, do you only eat the chocolate side? No you may have it because it is chocolate, but you have both sides of it, even though you choose to eat it because of its one side. Wayne Rooney likes the media attention on his private life for the positive perks, but he must realize if he wants his positive side exposed he must correspond with his negative side having coverage. 

Is Sir Alex Ferguson punishing Rooney in the Fabio Capello mould to John Terry where he needed reminding that adultery is setting the wrong example to young kids? Not only that he is bringing Manchester United into disrepute, and since Manchester United have become a global brand, his derailing of the image will be transpiring worldwide. Sir Alex Ferguson has always wanted to send the message that no player is bigger than the club, and he has continued to do that via his omission of Rooney. Player power may exist in today’s game, but it strikes an unhealthy cord in terms of the growth of the modern game, and no matter how high Wayne Rooney’s commercial value is, he should not be allowed to utilize it to smokescreen his frailties.  Wayne Rooney’s release comes on the pitch playing soccer, all the way back to his school days in Croxteth. By Sir Alex Ferguson taking this away it teaches Rooney a lesson, in the mould of a parent removing their child’s toys on punishment grounds, which is ironic as Ferguson has been a father figure to Rooney. If Ferguson and Rooney saw eye to eye, then if he is injured, why is Ferguson not doing the same as he did towards the conclusion of last season by playing him while he is injured, as Rooney is the reason why  United only lost the title by a point in the last campaign.  It is obvious that the growing friction is turning into the loveless marriage until January where the divorce between Rooney and Ferguson could possibly transpire.  Sir Alex Ferguson has disposed of people who have crossed the line in the past; however, he has had the funds to replace them. However, in a time where money is used to service debt, and time running out to knock Liverpool off their perch will Ferguson continue with swinging his exit door pendulum at discontent squad members? It is believed that this time the tables are turned and that Rooney is casting eyes to the exit door where the ghost of Beckham, Van Nistelrooy and company wither. Can Ferguson really afford to dispose of the man who emerged from Ronaldo’s shadow to single handedly carry Manchester United? Or will he swallow his pride as he sets his sights on his career long goal of upending Liverpool?

The breakdown in contract talks show just how much both parties no longer have a mutual vision.  In the first half of this year United would have met any demand possible to retain Rooney’s services. Due to his immense form, however, his deterioration in attitude has swiped the trump cards from Rooney’s negotiating hand in the latest player to play dressing room poker with Sir Alex Ferguson.