With Zlatan Ibrahimovic suspended for this weekend’s clash against Arsenal, you’d think it would be the perfect time for Wayne Rooney to step up to the plate for Manchester United.
However, despite the absence of the Swede, reports suggest that the United captain will be named on the bench after his drunken antics whilst on international duty.
Jose Mourinho is believed to be unhappy with Rooney’s behaviour following England’s 3-0 victory over Scotland which saw him getting drunk with wedding guests in the team hotel.
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The drinking session led to Rooney having to apologise. His statement read: "Naturally Wayne is sorry that pictures taken with fans have been published today,’ said a spokesman for Rooney.
"Although it was a day off for the whole squad and staff, he fully recognises that the images are inappropriate for someone in his position. Earlier today Wayne spoke privately to both Gareth Southgate and Dan Ashworth to unreservedly apologise.
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"He would like to further extend that apology to any young fans who have seen those pictures."
And, despite being skipper and on the verge of becoming the club’s all-time goalscorer, it seems that Rooney is far from being a fan favourite.
That can be identified in a poll that was ran by Manchester Evening News this morning. The newspaper asked United supporters if they wanted to see Rooney start against Arsenal on Saturday and the results were overwhelming.
A massive 81% decided that they would rather see the 31-year-old sitting alongside Mourinho in the dugout, rather than leading his side out at Old Trafford.
It’s obvious that Red Devils fans clearly don’t want Rooney in the starting line-up against the Gunners, but maybe they’re forgetting the record he has against them.
He’s scored an incredible 14 times in all competitions against them - only against Aston Villa (15) has he scored more.
In fact, Rooney scored his first Premier League goal, his first Premier League goal for United and his 100th Premier League goal all against the north Londoners.
He’s just two goals off Sir Bobby Charlton’s club record of 249 - but it doesn’t look likely he’ll be able to improve on his tally on Saturday unless he plays the role of super-sub.
So, who will be starting up-front against Arsenal? Well, according to the Mirror, it will be young Marcus Rashford who will be given the nod as Rooney looks on and it seems fans will be delighted with that.
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