On Tuesday morning Jose Mourinho held his long-awaited first press conference since being appointed as Manchester United manager back in May and he addressed a number of issues, from getting the FA Cup winners back into the Champions League to his youth policy.
He outlined his vision for the club’s future, took a subtle dig at Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, and, through a slip of the tongue, all but confirmed that Henrikh Mkhitaryan will be a Red Devil next season.
The Portuguese coach also expressed his desire to have “specialists” and not “multi-functional players”, which led to the question of where he sees Wayne Rooney playing next season.
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United’s captain starred in a central midfield role in the final few months of last season and he also played there for England at Euro 2016. However, the 30-year-old was a world-class centre-forward at his very best and is just five goals away from becoming the club’s all-time top scorer.
Mourinho on Rooney
Mourinho made it pretty clear that he will not be deploying Rooney in a deep midfield role next season and feels he is best positioned as a striker or just behind the striker.
He wants his skipper to be close to the box while he still has the desire to score goals. Mourinho stated, “With me, he will be never a number six, he will be never somebody playing 50 metres away from the goal”.
The self-proclaimed “Special One” went on to say, “There are many players with a great pass, but to be there and to put the ball in the net is the most difficult thing you have to find. So for me, he will be a (number) nine, he will be a ten, he will be a nine and a half, but not a six. Not even an eight.”
Man Utd fans react
Below are a selection of the best tweets from Man Utd fans, who generally appear to be happy that Rooney will be back playing further forward next season and not in midfield:
Where do YOU think Wayne Rooney should play next season? Share YOUR opinion in the comments box below!