Wayne Rooney has revealed his best goal he has scored in terms of footballing craft, and it’s not his famous overhead kick against Manchester City in 2011.
Rooney, now at Derby County, spent 13 years at Manchester United from 2004-2017, and is the club’ all-time leading goalscorer with 253 goals in 559 appearances for the club.
The goal most people remember from his distinguished United career was a match-winning overhead kick in the Manchester derby, but while Rooney says that is his favourite goal, a strike against Wigan in 2009 is his best strike.
Wayne Rooney celebrates after scoring at home against Wigan Athletic in December 2009
The former Manchester United striker also revealed some key advice from Sir Alex Ferguson
WAYNE ROONEY AT MANCHESTER UNITED
- Appearances: 559
- Goals: 253
- Assists: 146
- Yellows/Reds: 98/3
Statistics in all competitions according to Transfermarkt
‘When asked my favourite goal, I always say the overhead kick versus City — but we’re talking, here, about the craft of goalscoring, how it’s about teamwork, movement, control and timing and a goal that probably few people remember sticks out for me,’ Rooney said in his column for The Sunday Times.
‘It came versus Wigan, when Rafael crossed from the right and my timing was literally perfect: I got across the centre back, got a nick on the ball and the ’keeper had no chance.’
Rooney, who is England’s all-time leading goalscorer as well, also explained how Sir Alex Ferguson gave him advice not to work so hard in games, in order to stay fresh for the final stages of the game.
‘You learn little things along the way,’ Rooney said. ‘The best advice I received was from Fergie. He’d say, “You’re working too hard,” and at first I thought, “What do you mean? Isn’t that what you want?”
Ex-United boss Ferguson signed Rooney at 18-years-old from Everton in the summer of 2004
‘But I used to try to run as hard as I could for 90 minutes and in the last ten minutes be tired. The manager wanted his strikers to keep a little bit in the tank, because that match-winning chance might not arrive until the 90th minute — Fergie time!’
Rooney is now at Derby County having joined the Championship club in January after 18 months in the MLS at D.C. United.
He has since been named club captain and played his former side United in the FA Cup fifth round last month, coming out on the losing side in a 3-0 loss.