Wayne Rooney’s iconic moments for Manchester United, Everton and England

Following his teenage breakthrough at Everton, the all-time top scorer for both Manchester United and England has never been far from the headlines.

Wayne Rooney burst on to the scene as a 16-year-old at Everton and has been writing headline after ever headline ever since - not just for his goalscoring exploits.

After two years at Goodison, he was snapped up by Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United for £27million, going on to become the club's top scorer and captain.

He returned to his boyhood club in 2017 before winding down his career at DC United and Derby County where he has now moved into managerment.

Critics says he never fulfilled the potential shown in those early days at Goodison and Old Trafford. Nevertheless, Rooney can still look back on a career chock-full of iconic moments - and tabloid headlines.

Remember the name, Wayne Rooney!

We imagine commentator Clive Tyldesley is quite proud of this one.

The line exclaimed following Rooney's remarkable goal against Arsenal back in 2002 proved to be quite the prediction.

At 16 years old, Rooney announced himself to the world in spectacular style, scoring from 25 yards out against Arsene Wenger's Arsenal.

Just five days short of his 17th birthday, Rooney's goal made him the youngest Premier League scorer, and quickly caught the eye of circling Premier League giants.

In his debut season, Rooney netted eight goals in 37 appearances, but it was the strike against Arsenal that is still fondly remembered by both Everton fans to this day.

Manchester United debut

After impressing for Everton, both Newcastle United and Chelsea joined Manchester United in pursuit of his signature, although it was the latter that eventually secured the deal for a hefty £27million - the highest fee at the time for a player under the age of 20.

Rooney was immediately thrown in at the deep end, and was handed his debut in a Champions League tie against Turkish side Fenerbahce.

Clearly unphased by the pressure, Rooney rose to the occasion, scoring a hat-trick and providing an assist in a 6-2 drubbing.

Ferguson's hefty outlay was already looking a bargain but surely even he couldn't have predicted what was still to come from Rooney.

Champions League triumph

Despite his debut success, Rooney and United ended the season without a trophy - finishing third in the Premier League.

Following a rare dry patch for Ferguson's Red Devils, it didn't take long for the legendary Scot to return his side to winning ways, and much of their success in the late 2000s was a result of United's unstoppable attack.

A year before Rooney's arrival, United brought in none other than Cristiano Ronaldo, and the pair quickly developed a lethal partnership.

Premier League and League Cup success followed in 2005 and 2006, respectively. However, it was the arrival of Argentine striker Carlos Tevez that took United's attack to another level, giving birth to one of the most dangerous offensive trios ever seen in the game.

In the 2007/08 season, the trio truly flourished, firing United to a Champions League final where they faced fellow Premier League side Chelsea.

Ferguson again opted to field the trio up front in the showcase and Ronaldo opened the scoring before Frank Lampard equalised to take the game to a penalty shootout.

Unfortunately for Rooney, he was taken off in extra time, meaning he was unable to step up to the spot. Nevertheless, United triumphed 6-5 to win their third, and most recent, Champions League title.

Rooney netted 18 goals in 43 appearances that campaign, going down in history as a third of one of the game's most feared front three ever.

Contract saga

After six years of success, including three Premier League titles and a Champions League victory, Rooney's future at United was left unclear in 2010 when Sir Alex Ferguson claimed Rooney wanted to leave for Chelsea.

Claiming his reasons were for ambition instead of money, Rooney and his representatives released a statement, all but confirming his desire to leave.

Unsurprisingly, Rooney's relationship with the club and its staff began to fray. However in a dramatic turn of events, he went on to sign a new five-year deal at Old Trafford.

With Rooney's icon status in danger of being downgraded, he restored his standing and then some with a spectacular bicycle kick later in the season to win the derby against cross-town rivals Manchester City.

Rooney stated it was the best goal of his career, while Ferguson described the strike as the best he had ever witnessed at Old Trafford.

Despite the saga, Rooney went on to score 16 goals in all competitions in what was another title-winning season for United.

Record-breaking Rooney

Highly rated in his youth, Rooney differed from most teenage prodigies in that he actually delivered on his potential.

During his 13-year spell at Manchester United Rooney scored a record 253 goals, putting him four ahead of previous holder Sir Bobby Charlton.

Despite playing as a forward for much of his career, as Rooney advanced in years he was able to adapt to different roles, making his feat even more impressive.

Rooney broke the record in January 2017, scoring a typically scintillating free-kick against Stoke City in the final minutes of a 1-1 draw.

And, while Rooney holds a remarkable domestic record, he is also England's top scorer with 53 goals.

Rooney broke the record in Euro 2016 qualifying courtesy of a penalty against Switzerland at Wembley Stadium, again surpassing a mark set by Charlton.

Halfway line goals

Ever since his debut strike against Arsenal, it was clear that Rooney had a keen eye for the spectacular, and throughout his career he built a portfolio of superb strikes.

While his strike against Arsenal and bicycle kick against City stand out, some of Rooney's best goals have come from the halfway line... or even his own half.

Rooney scored not once, not twice but three times from extreme distances, once for Manchester United, once for Everton - both against West Ham United - and finally for DC United.

His first came for the Red Devils during their torrid 2013/14 season under David Moyes

A shove on James Tomkins allowed him to get under a bouncing ball and his half volley from just inside the West Ham half deceived Adrian and bounced into the roof of the net.

Rooney repeated the feat upon his return to Everton for the 2017/18 season, this time from further out.

England team-mate Joe Hart rushed out to clear the ball from Dominic Calvert-Lewin and it fell to the feet of Rooney whose first-time effort from inside his own half beat the despairing keeper and covering defender to complete an unforgettable hat-trick.

Rooney produced his third effort from distance in MLS for DC United and again it was prefaced by a shove. However, that should take nothing away from the 60-yard strike which left out-of-position Orlando City SC goalkeeper Brian Rowe flailing.

The good, the bad and the ugly for England

While he may be the nation's top scorer, things haven't always been rosy for Rooney in an England shirt.

As part of England's 'golden generation', Rooney was part of a side that had high expectations, but achieved extremely little.

After struggling with injury, the news of Rooney's availability for the 2006 World Cup was music to the nation's ears, and all started well as England eased into the knockout stages after topping their group.

But in the round of 16, England faced Portugal, pitting Rooney against United team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo.

In the 62nd minute, Rooney was deemed to have stamped on Portuguese defender Ricardo Carvalho, resulting in an immediate red card.

But the drama escalated soon after, when Rooney and Ronaldo confronted one another, and the Portuguese winger was seen winking towards the Portugal bench.

Following his dismissal, England managed to hold out for a penalty shootout, but as is so often the case were subsequently eliminated from the tournament.

In the 2010 World Cup, relations soured even further between Rooney and England fans, when the side was booed off following a 0-0 draw with Algeria.

In response to the crowd, Rooney lashed out and criticised the fans through a television camera that was following his exit from the pitch.

Rooney later apologised "for any offence caused". It wasn't the first and certainly wouldn't be the last time the words 'Rooney' and 'apology' would feature in the tabloids.

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