Published: 7:00AM BST 21 Oct 2010
As the Europe's elite digest the news that Wayne Rooney is on his way out of Manchester United, we look at the reaction of some of the clubs likely to buy him - and one that isn't..
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini said he is not expecting to do any business in the January transfer window after denying there had been any contact with unsettled Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney.
Asked if there had been contact between City and the player, Mancini said: “No. Never. Rooney is a great player but I think he’ll stay at United. He’s an important player for United.”
However the Italian coach has indicated that he could make changes in the summer.
“There are a lot of players in the world, and what is important for us is to think of our players and our season,” added Mancini.
“In the summer if there is a player who could change something for us, we could talk about this. Not January, I don’t think.
“Manchester City are developing every month, every year. But every day we hear we are buying a new player and that is not good.
“It is correct that the owners have big ambitions, but everyone who works here has big ambitions for the future. At this moment we must think about [Europa League opponents] Poznan and the next league game against Arsenal.”
While the Reds and the Blues do battle over Wayne Rooney’s signature, the Rebels — better known as FC United of Manchester — declined to put in a bid yesterday.
“Forget his wages,” said Karl Marginson, the manager of the non-League side formed as a protest in the wake of the Glazers’ takeover at Old Trafford. “We couldn’t pay his hairdressing bills. And he doesn’t even have much hair.”
“The idea behind this club was to get away from top-level football, where the money men have taken over. Look at the sale of Cristiano Ronaldo: there was talk of having £80 million to spend, but it was never going to happen.
“When you look at these players earning £200,000 a week, and the way they behave — well, they have nothing in common with the man on the street.”
While Rooney seeks a new contract that would bring him nearly £1 million per month, FC United are trying to raise the £3.5 million they need to build a new stadium and free them from their groundshare arrangement with Bury.
John Terry admitted that he would relish the opportunity to play with Wayne Rooney at Stamford Bridge. The pair are England team-mates and Terry would enjoy extending that relationship to club level.
Carlo Ancelotti, the Chelsea manager, has already said he would join the hunt if the striker is officially made available and while the Old Trafford club would be reluctant to sell to their biggest rivals over recent seasons, the prospect of Rooney travelling to London is one that tantalises at Stamford Bridge.
When asked if he would like Rooney to wear the blue of Chelsea, Terry got a nudge from a club official. Clearly, this has become a sensitive topic at Chelsea, whose owner, Roman Abramovich, would enjoy the prospect of stealing his rival’s most coveted asset.
“Wayne is the best young player in the world,” Terry said. “I am no different to any other player in saying that. You obviously have to respect Manchester United and Wayne, but who knows what’s going to happen?
“We’ve got a great squad of players and he would add to that and strengthen the squad. He is the best player in the world for me.”
José Mourinho admits he would be interested in bringing Wayne Rooney to La Liga – provided it has the blessing of his long-term friend Sir Alex Ferguson.
Real Madrid are one of the few clubs with the financial muscle to attract the United striker and while Mourinho still believes Rooney will stay at Old Trafford, the former Chelsea coach would clearly be prepared to listen if the chance to sign the player arose.
“He probably wants to leave for some reason but I believe he belongs to Man United, he belongs to Man United fans, he belongs to Old Trafford,” Mourinho said. “But if at the end of the day Man United decide that he is to leave, then give me a call.”
Mourinho admitted he would not be alone in a bidding war if Rooney was put on the market.
“Everybody will be interested,” he said. “But I like him, I like Sir Alex, I like Man United and I believe the best thing for him is to stay there for life. Would I like to reunite him with Cristiano Ronaldo? Of course I would, but I am certain he will stay at Old Trafford.”