• Premier League

Rooney: Transfer request was my 'biggest mistake'

ESPN staff
September 7, 2012
Wayne Rooney says Sir Alex Ferguson convinced him to stay at Manchester United © Getty Images

Wayne Rooney admits handing in a transfer request at Manchester United two years ago was the biggest mistake of his career.

Rooney expressed his desire to leave United in October 2010 after questioning the club's ambition and ability to attract top players.

The England striker was linked with a move to rivals Manchester City, but performed a spectacular U-turn just two days later, signing a new five-year deal at Old Trafford, and Rooney admits he regrets the whole incident.

"In September 2010 my ankle puts me on the sidelines," he recalled in an excerpt of his latest autobiography serialised in the Daily Mirror.

"I get frustrated with myself, my game, my injury, and everything around me. I'm stuck in a cycle of bad form but I can't get out of it. And that's when I make the biggest mistake of my football career.

"In October, I release a statement which publicly questions my happiness at Old Trafford. Am I better off elsewhere?

"Everyone makes a fuss. There are discussions inside United to sort out the issue, people outside United chuck their opinions around, but the thing is, nobody really knows what's going on in my life.

"None of them understand where I am in my career. They don't know where my head's at. The only person who really knows what's going on in there is me, but even I'm not sure what I want.''

Rooney, who was linked with a last-gasp move away from United before the transfer window closed, revealed Sir Alex Ferguson played a key role in convincing him to stay at Old Trafford.

He said: "The manager has his say. 'Sometimes you look in a field and you see a cow and you think it's a better cow than the one you have in your own field. And it never really works that way'.

"He's saying the grass isn't always greener, and he's right. I like what's in my field. I'm wrong. United want the same as me: trophies, success, to be the best."

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