Manchester United fans were once again furious with Wayne Rooney‘s performance in their side’s 3-1 League Cup win over Northampton Town on Wednesday night.
The captain, deployed in the No.9 role for the first time since early May, looked sapped of confidence and attacking potency, exemplified most clearly by a miss from point blank range in the opening minutes.
Man United fans didn’t hesitate when it came to lambasting the 30-year-old.
The ones saying Rooney should be dropped are out of their minds… He should actually be banished from starting again for #MUFC
— Rafael Hernández (@RafaelH117) September 21, 2016
The real positive is that we have found our captain's level. Rooney struggling against a League One side shows where his game is at.
— Hesham Bilal-Hafiz (@hesham786) September 21, 2016
Thing with Rooney is he's not even a good captain. Not only is he stinking the place out with his play, he offers literally no leadership.
— pauliegunn (@PaulGunning1) September 21, 2016
Rooney is finished
— Robbie (@MxgicMarcus) September 21, 2016
It is not just Rooney’s insipid, turgid playing style that adversely effects the team, but his lack of genuine leadership as well.
The 30-year-old has been an unwelcome curmudgeon – in both style and persona – on this United side for some time, perhaps ever since Sir Alex Ferguson understandably started to push Rooney to one side back in early 2013. And yet, it is only now – three managers later – that an en masse swathe of derision is being thrown towards Rooney, as opposed to the majority persisting with the captain, pointing the finger at managerial inadequacies instead.
How long, I wonder, can Mourinho continue to ignore the elephant in the room? At any level of business, competition or teamwork, a weak link is ruthlessly dealt with, swept away and never acknowledged again.
Think about it like this: if the chief operating officer of a major conglomerate company radically underperformed for three months (let alone three years), would he still be in a job? Taking this line of thought, why should it be any different for Rooney?