Wayne Rooney has revealed that the biggest regret of his Premier League career was not being ‘more selfish,’ especially during his final season at Everton.
The former England captain is of course a bonafide Premier League legend, scoring 208 goals and laying on 103 assists in the English top flight alone, in a career which spanned 16 years before finally moving abroad to play for MLS outfit, DC United.
Having made his debut for his boyhood club Everton all the way back in 2002 aged just 16, he would quickly become the world’s most expensive teenager when Sir Alex Ferguson coughed up £25.6 million for the talented teenagers services in 2004.
He would go on to eclipse Sir Bobby Charlton’s long-standing record goal haul at Manchester United, netting 253 times in all competitions for the Red Devils before returning to Everton in 2016.
However, despite also cementing his place as England’s all-time leading goalscorer, his vision to spot a pass and his ability to execute it often saw Rooney dropped into midfield, and he reckons his goal haul would have been even more impressive if he had only been ‘more selfish.’
“I loved playing football and being involved in the game,” Rooney told talkSPORT.
“But, if I was maybe a little bit more selfish, then my stats would probably be a bit better if I played as a number nine throughout my career.”
While Rooney had been used as a midfielder on a number of occasions, even dating back to the Sir Alex Ferguson days at United, the former Three Lions captain was particularly rueful about his final season at Everton, even though he finished as the club’s top scorer with 10 league goals.
“I think my only regret, really, was my last year at Everton,” he added.
“I started off playing as a striker and then the team wasn’t doing well and then, all through my own fault really, speaking with the manager we both felt it would be better if I went into a midfield role to try and help us get control of games really.
“When really, I think I should have turned round and said: ‘I want to be up top and scoring goals’.
“I had done it in the first half of the season but, when I went into the midfield role, I didn’t do it so much.”