Wayne Rooney set to become the highest-paid player in the Premier League as Manchester United look to secure striker's future

A mammoth £300,000-a-week deal is reportedly close to completion and Rooney is also being mooted as a potential captain when Nemanja Vidic leaves

Manchester United are close to reaching an agreement with striker Wayne Rooney that would see him put pen-to-paper on a four-and-a-half year deal worth an incredible £70m.

United are keen to keep the England striker out of the hands of Premier League rivals Chelsea following their intense interest during last summer that saw the Blues have two offers rejected. Although a deal has not been signed, it is sufficiently close to being complete that the club no longer fear a breakdown in negotiations or a U-turn on Rooney’s behalf.

Rooney publicly fell out with former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson at the end of last season, with the Scot choosing to drop the England international from his squad. With Ferguson retiring, Rooney unhappy and Chelsea interested, all bets were on a move to Stamford Bridge only for David Moyes succeeding in his attempt to persuade Rooney that his future lie at Old Trafford, though they are yet to confirm whether the deal will be a four or five-and-a-half year offer.

 

Under his current deal, Rooney is contracted to the club until the end of next summer, which has led to the reigning Premier League champions moving swiftly to try and tie down one of their prized assets. I has widely been reported that Rooney will be offered a staggering £300,000-a-week in a deal that will see him become the highest paid player in the Premier League, and puts him on a par with the likes of Gareth Bale and Lionel Messi – although Cristiano Ronaldo would still be ahead of him on his mammoth £78m contract he signed last summer.

To coincide with a possible new contract, Rooney is also in the running to take over the United captaincy at the end of the season, when current skipper Nemanja Vidic departs for pastures new after he confirmed he will leave the club when his deal expires. With Patrice Evra also expected to leave along with Rio Ferdinand – though the pair are yet to confirm their plans for the future – Rooney will be one of few candidates who could take on the captain’s armband, with his strike partner Robin van Persie and midfielder Michael Carrick also in the running.

The proposed contract would secure Rooney until he is nearly 33, meaning that he will have spent over 14 years at the club since his 2004 transfer from Everton providing he isn’t lured elsewhere. It would give the club a greater security when it comes to transfer offers for the 28-year-old too, given that he will be in the final 12 months of his contract this summer and could be available for a smaller fee than has been touted in the past.

Perhaps a sign of what could be an appointment in the not too distant future is the fact that Rooney has been informed of the club’s transfer plans and how they intend on returning to the top of the Premier League.

Speaking after the £37.1m acquisition of Juan Mata, Rooney said: “It’s exciting. Juan has come in and it’s another world-class player to have in the squad.

“It’ll take time – it can always take a little bit of time for every player to gel and to bond but we really hope we can all start scoring goals and help the team be successful.

“We’ve got a lot of massive games in the Champions League and the league. We’re all looking forward to them.”

United face relegation battlers Crystal Palace this weekend as they have a rare midweek off given their Champions League last-16 first leg with Olympiakos takes place next week. Given that they are already out of the FA Cup, the squad will not have played competitively for two weeks when they take to the Selhurst Park pitch on Saturday evening.

Given the squad could be a little rusty going into the match, Rooney is not concerned by the lack of playing time and actually feels the break could prove beneficial towards their attempt at hunting down fourth-placed Liverpool, who sit 11 points ahead of their long-time adversaries.

“We have a bit of a break before our next game now and hopefully we can prepare well and kick on for the big matches coming up,” Rooney claimed, ahead of the first of three straight away matches. “It’s nice to spend time together. When you’re at home you go to training then you go home and see your families, but with trips like this you’re training then spending time with the lads.”

Read More:
Vidic agrees to join Inter Milan - reports
Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward promises big changes in summer
Suggested Topics
Arts and Entertainment
TVShow's twee, safe facade smashed by ice cream melting scandal
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Lisa Kudrow, Courtney Cox and Jennifer Anniston reunite for a mini Friends sketch on Jimmy Kimmel Live
tv
Life and Style
tech
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Actor, model and now record breaker: Jiff the Pomeranian
Video
News
REX/Eye Candy
science
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates after scoring his first goal for Arsenal in the Champions League qualifier against Besiktas
sportChilean's first goal for the club secures place in draw for Champions League group stages
News
i100
News
Down time: an employee of Google uses the slide to get to the canteen
scienceBosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?