Wayne Rooney is an icon of world sport. He’s one of the greatest English footballers to ever live, breaking records and lifting countless trophies. Since retirement, he’s also proved his mettle as a manager, doing a fantastic job at Derby County, while bigger and better things almost certainly await.
He’s lived his entire life in the spotlight, breaking onto the scene as a young 16-year-old, with his name in the headlines on a daily basis almost ever since. But despite the mass media coverage, how much do we actually know about him?
Of course, we know he’s married with children. We probably know he’s a big Stereophonics fan thanks to his tattoo with the band’s lyrics. We know he grew up in Liverpool, and we know he was a huge Everton fan. But what about the lesser known things?
Well, we’ve done some digging to unveil some of the more unusual facts you may not know about the legend that is Wayne Rooney…
It almost wasn’t to be
We all know about Wayne Rooney’s boxing antics with Phil Bardsley in a friendly boxing match in his kitchen, which saw the Manchester United star “knocked out”, but it did almost turn into a career for him.
Rooney has always been a keen boxer and in his youth almost gave up football to concentrate on the sport. Reports have it that as a 14-year-old Rooney was no longer enjoying his football and decided that he was going to train full-time with his other passion, boxing, and try to make it pro.
However, Everton stepped in as they wanted to keep their very own prize fighter, and a discussion with Colin Harvey, his coach with the Toffees at the time, gave him just the word he needed to get back to enjoying his football. Two years later he was in the first team.
He’s a gambling fan
We get the impression that Wayne Rooney would love it in Las Vegas. He’s a big fan of boxing, as we’ve established, and it turns out he loves a gamble too. He’s often been seen in casinos, and with the rise in popularity of sites like 777, it’s also believed that he loves a bit of online play too.
It’s table games which are his main passion, spending his downtime in hotels or in between games having a flutter.
He’s also long been a big advocate of responsible gambling too, promoting this on a number of occasions throughout his career.
He’s been sued by David Moyes
David Moyes gave Wayne Rooney his debut at Everton. It was the catalyst that turned him into the global superstar and young phenomenon he was. And it wasn’t long before Manchester United came knocking.
His departure from Goodison Park at the time, though, was far from smooth. In Rooney’s book, My Story So Far, the forward claimed that Moyes had betrayed Rooney and ultimately forced him to go to Old Trafford so Everton could take the money. Moyes denied such a claim and sued Rooney, alongside his ghost writer and publisher.
They settled out of court, and of course they worked together once again at Manchester United, although it is believed by that time that it was all water under the bridge.
His favourite book is Harry Potter
You probably wouldn’t expect Rooney to be much of a reader, but one book he has openly admitted to loving is Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone.
During a campaign to promote children’s reading, he revealed it was his favourite book and the Harry Potter series as a whole and really gets his imagination going.
Perhaps of an evening he dreams of being a wizard. After all, he has provided plenty of his own magic down the years.