By Josh Powell | Sunderland v Manchester United
While Manchester United are floundering in the Premier League, the one positive many people are pointing to is Wayne Rooney. The United striker is playing the role of ‘final straw’, floating past Red Devils’ fans as David Moyes struggles to cope with filling Alex Ferguson’s shoes.
Despite chucking a transfer request in Fergie’s direction at the end of last season and spending the summer with a number of ‘mysterious injuries’, Rooney has come back and chipped in with five goals in all competitions before October. United may be in poor form, but that’s Rooney’s second highest tally in the first two months of a season since he arrived at Old Trafford.
Rumours that he is getting some divine force from that ridiculous headband he wears are unfounded. The theory that he’s well and truly putting himself in the shop window are probably closer to the mark.
Roo’s record in August and September
|Year||Goals||Playing Time (minutes)|
He’s hardly setting the world alight, but with a goal every 113 minutes in August and September, Rooney has made a good start to the season by his standards. The only campaign better than this one, was the inspired 2011/12 season, where he banged in nine goals in 540 minutes, including consecutive hat-tricks against Arsenal and Bolton.
The other notable point is that despite missing some high profile encounters (Shakhtar Donetsk and Liverpool), Rooney hasn’t notched up this much playing time at the start of the season since 2009. Wazza is hardly renowned for coming back off the summer break in peak physical condition so this much playing time after a few months of ‘letting loose’, is a pointer to his good form.
The striker has another chance to put his ability on display for Jose Mourinho to ogle, when United face manager-less Sunderland at the Stadium of Light on Saturday night. Nothing helps force The Special One’s hand like banging in a few goals against a relegation-threatened side. Especially considering Messrs Torres and Eto’o have failed to bag a league goal this season.
Rooney is 4/1 to open the scoring in the North-East and 11/10 to find the onion bag at anytime. It is 7/4 that he scores in a United win and 11/2 that he knocks in two or more in the game.
Get the cheque book ready Roman. Rooney still has his eyes on a move to Stamford Bridge and those hair transplants aren’t cheap.
- Fancy Rooney to continue his streak in front of goal? All the latest odds on Manchester United’s trip to Sunderland are right this way