7 of Wayne Rooney's FILTHIEST moments
So filthy, he might want to acquire the copyright
Over the years, Wayne Rooney has been no stranger to making a few headlines for his antics on and off the pitch. In recognition of this, here are seven of the filthiest... sorry, no, FILTHIEST things Wayne Rooney has ever been caught doing on camera*.
Undoubtedly one of Wayne Rooney's filthiest moments on a football pitch - what else did you think this was going to be about? - came at the tender age of 16.
Cast your mind back to September 2002. Thrust into the action as a late substitute against title-winning Arsenal, a fresh-faced Rooney picked up the ball outside the area in stoppage time and whipped a long-range shot in off the underside of the crossbar to give Everton a memorable victory.
Rooney had announced himself.
— Premier League (@premierleague) June 28, 2018
Not even two years on from his Arsenal goal, Rooney's status as a footballing megastar was all but confirmed at Euro 2004.
Completely undaunted by sharing the same stage as Zinedine Zidane and France in England's opener, Rooney turned heads as he tormented Les Bleus - and left Lilian Thuram for dead in a footrace - before scoring twice in group games against Switzerland and Croatia. Were it not for a metatarsal injury against Portugal, who knows where Rooney might have taken England that summer?
Here are some of the highlights. Dripping in filth.
18 years old. Look how good he was pic.twitter.com/ZTnj25K33i
— Si Lloyd (@SmnLlyd5) May 28, 2021
Rooney's showing at Euro 2004 earned him a big money move to Manchester United later that summer.
But could he handle the pressure of life at Old Trafford? Would he be able to shoulder the extra scrutiny that came with his price tag?
Such questions were answered emphatically on his debut against Fenerbahce in the Champions League, where he scored three times.
16-years since an 18-year-old Wayne Rooney took Fenerbahçe to the cleaners on his Man Utd debut 🤯
A sign of things to come...pic.twitter.com/CN9ZQldaSB
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) September 28, 2020
He mellowed a bit as his career went on, but one of the most exciting things about watching a young Wayne Rooney was that he very clearly struggled to keep a lid on his temper at times.
The goal he scored against Newcastle kind of neatly summed it all up. Furious at his side not being giving a free-kick, he can be seen arguing with the referee. Then, as the ball drops for him outside the area, he channels his anger into smashing a ferocious dipping volley into the top corner of the goal.
“Siri, find me the angriest volley since records began.”
“Your search returned Wayne Rooney vs Newcastle 16 years ago today.”pic.twitter.com/E459JvGc0N
— A Funny Old Game (@sid_lambert) April 24, 2021
Arguably the filthiest of all Wayne Rooney's filth came in a tense Manchester derby at Old Trafford in 2011.
Manchester City had levelled things up at 1-1 at Old Trafford when a deflected Nani cross was clipped into their area. There was Rooney, finding a pocket of space before executing an explosive overhead bicycle kick to win the game for United.
Even now, over a decade on, it's still magic.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) December 10, 2017
Back for a second and final stint at Everton, Rooney had already scored one goal from the halfway line against West Ham in his United days. This one, however, was even better.
After Joe Hart had raced from his area to clear up a loose ball, Rooney floated a ball beyond his former England teammate from inside the centre circle to seal a hat-trick.
Not bad, eh?
— Premier League (@premierleague) May 26, 2020
Even with his career drawing to a close, Rooney remained capable of moments of outstanding filth.
Having moved out to America for a stint with D.C. United in Major League Soccer, he produced an iconic assist in the dying moments against Orlando City.
D.C. were chasing a late winner, and had sent their goalkeeper up for a corner. This looked to have backfired when the ball was scrambled clear, leaving Rooney's 33-year-old legs as the only hope of preventing Orlando scoring a decisive breakaway goal to win the game.
Miraculously, Rooney chased back and won possession with a perfectly timed last-ditch challenge. Even more miraculously, he surged forward into the Orlando half and stood up a pinpoint cross-field ball for Luciano Acosta to nod home a winner.
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) October 10, 2019
*That he has not yet bought the copyright for