Zlatan Ibrahimovic has claimed that Wayne Rooney did all the hard work for Cristiano Ronaldo when the two superstars played together at Manchester United between 2004 and 2009.
Ibrahimovic has been interviewed for a new documentary on Rooney - which will be broadcast by the BBC next week - and he has claimed the England international didn’t receive enough credit when Ronaldo was at Old Trafford.
“When he was playing with Cristiano Ronaldo, all the work was done by Wayne,” the Sweden international is quoted as saying by the Daily Mail. “But he didn’t get the credit because Ronaldo was scoring all the goals.”
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It’s true that Rooney was the more hard-working of the two forwards in terms of their defensive contribution and would happily play out of position if required - but Ronaldo received more credit because he was often more decisive when it mattered most.
With Rooney and Ronaldo in the same side, Manchester United won the Premier League title in 2007, 2008 and 2009. In all of those seasons, it was Ronaldo who scored more goals than his teammate.
Rooney and Ronaldo complimented each other well
Without Ronaldo, Manchester United would not have won the 2007-08 Premier League title or the Champions League in the same season.
The Portuguese superstar scored 42 goals in 49 appearances, 31 on which were scored in the Premier League, and went on to win the Ballon d’Or.
Rooney, by contrast, netted 12 Premier League goals in 18 in all competitions.
In truth, Ronaldo and Rooney complimented each other well. The three-pronged attack featuring the two world stars and Carlos Tevez was one of the best forward lines of Sir Alex Ferguson’s 26-year tenure in charge of the Red Devils.
But Zlatan, it seems, has a soft spot for Rooney.
“I would love to have played with him,’” the Paris Saint-Germain star added. “I will just have to continue watching him instead.”
Manchester United fans: is Zlatan Ibrahimovic right - or is he being unfair on Cristiano Ronaldo? Have your say by leaving a comment in the box below!