bwin’s bookies have installed Chelsea as the favourites to sign Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney after Blues boss Jose Mourinho dropped the clearest indication yet that he wants to beat Arsenal, Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona to the singing of the former Everton man.
Speculation about Rooney’s future has refused to go away all summer despite new United manager David Moyes constantly reiterating that the England forward, who worked with Moyes when the pair were at Everton over a decade ago, is not for sale at any price.
The striker’s summer took an unhelpful turn when he picked up a hamstring injury on United’s tour of the Far East that will rule him out for a month, and reports today suggest that it could be his last action for the club, with Chelsea resolute in their desire to bring the 27-year-old to Stamford Bridge.
With just two years left on his contract at Old Trafford, Rooney is in a position where his next deal will tie him to United long-term and with rumours that he still wants to move on, Moyes could be forced into selling his number ten.
And today Mourinho lit the blue touch paper in a way that only Mourinho can by saying, as respectfully and tactfully as he could, that Chelsea would be interested in taking Rooney to Stamford Bridge should the striker become available this summer.
“It’s a funny, tricky question from an ethical point of view as I can’t talk about players from other teams,” the Happy One said.
“But it is not my character to speak with hypocrisy, I always tell what I see – he’s a player that I like very much. Being fast and direct I like him very much, but he’s a Manchester United player.”
It has been enough for bwin to go 7/2 that Rooney joins Chelsea this summer, the shortest price ahead of PSG (5/1) and Arsenal (6/1).
Rooney is 3/10 to remain a United player beyond the end of the transfer window and it is 10/1 and bigger he signs for another club.