Rooney has to put in transfer request to get Man Utd move

Wayne Rooney will have to make a formal transfer request if he is to leave Manchester United, the Daily Mail has reported, as the saga of the England international and his future at the Premier League champions threatens to continue through the summer.

Rooney was expected to meet with new United manager David Moyes on Wednesday but the pair shared only a brief conversation during training. More in-depth talks could take place on Thursday but United are insisting Rooney is not for sale.

The Mail claims that Arsenal made a discreet enquiry into the availability of Rooney but United told the Gunners the player was not moving, and there has been no further contact from Arsenal or any other potential suitor. The valuation of the Rooney plus his high wages mean there is only a handful of clubs who could afford his transfer.

Rooney is said to have suggested to Sir Alex Ferguson towards the end of last season that a move away from United could be in his best interests, but stopped short of issuing a formal transfer request – despite Ferguson stating he asked to leave. The only way, however, that United would consent to selling Rooney would be if he did make a formal request to leave.

Moyes is due to speak with the media for the first time as United manager on Friday and Rooney is understood to want the club to clarify the situation – to explain that he did not ask to leave in an effort to prevent a backlash from United’s supporters. If the situation is smoothed over then Rooney and United could begin contract negotiations, as he has two years remaining on his current deal.

Rooney joined United from Moyes’ Everton in 2004, having starred in that year’s European Championships in Portugal. Moyes had given Rooney his senior debut two years earlier, with a League Cup goal at Wrexham making Rooney Everton’s youngest ever goal scorer, a feat since surpassed by James Vaughan.

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