Wayne Rooney on US football and not being famous stateside


Wayne Rooney may be one of the most famous footballers on the planet but even stars have to go house hunting.

His wife Coleen has just arrived in Washington DC, where the former England captain has begun a three-and-a-half year contract with MLS team DC United.

The couple are anxious to find a home quickly, with room for their four sons, before they start school.

He told me: “I don’t really want to put them in a hotel because four boys in a hotel would be difficult!

“So once we get a house and my boys are in school, then hopefully it will get a lot easier to get in to a routine of living.”

Has he had a chat with David Beckham about how to do that? “No … I think Becks obviously has his other stuff off the pitch, his commercial stuff and different stuff like that.”

He gives a self-deprecating laugh: “I’d be happy going home and spending the time with my family.”

Rooney is being paid something in the region of £46m for his multi-year deal, making him one of the highest-paid players in the league’s history.

But he has a real challenge on his hands. DC United is at the bottom of the table, Rooney is leading a very young squad, and expectations are high.

He said: “In America they want goals, they want attacking play all the time, it adds a bit to the excitement of the game.

“But sometimes they need someone on the pitch who can say ‘calm down a little bit and see the game out’ rather than just keep going and going.

“That happened to me with the older players, the likes of Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, they knew the right times to see the game out or the right times to go and press.”

He says he’s enjoying the more open style of play here, despite recently suffering a broken nose, and laughs off the observations of sports writers who have suggested that the speed and accuracy of his passes sometimes seem to catch his teammates off guard.

Are his team still trying to catch up with him? “No, no. I bring a different quality to the team… other players do the same… it’s a mixture really.”

Rooney has said he is here to compete and win rather than coast to the end of his playing career.

But off the pitch, Rooney has discovered an added bonus to US life.

Here he can blend in with the tourists without being mobbed. His Instagram shows him out with Coleen and one of their sons enjoying some of the US capital’s sights, almost unnoticed. He finds it a relief.

“I’ve had it in England since I was 16 and I’m sure if you speak to anyone I’m close with, family and friends, it’s not something I particularly like. Here it’s a bit more relaxed.

“It’s good to spend time with the kids, not stopping all the time, having to do pictures and autographs all the time… and just give them the attention they need.”

Can he see himself settling in the States? “I don’t know, I think it depends on my family and how they settle in.

“I’ve taken a lot of their time up over the years, so when I finish playing, if they want to stay I’ll stay, if they want to go home, I’ll go home.”

You may also like

1 comment

Transfer deadline day: Why the big summer sale comes early this year - Middle East AffairsAugust 9, 2018 - 7:05 pm

[…] the earlier closure could well rob the big day of some of its drama, with Wayne Rooney finally moving from Everton to Manchester United on 31 August after a summer of speculation back in […]


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: