Daft Rooney to Celtic chat ends as England legend goes full-time at Derby County

By Euan Davidson

January 15, 2021

Celtic are never far from a daft rumour, and Wayne Rooney potentially joining as manager was just that.

An ex-England great in Steven Gerrard is proving successful at Rangers. Naturally, then, the predictable link is that Celtic should employ one of the ‘Golden Generation’ as their boss.

With Neil Lennon’s job the source of constant speculation this season, many names have been touted. From the sublime, in Mauricio Pochettino, to the ridiculous.

With Wayne Rooney taking up the Derby County job permanently, this is another lazy link we can safely cross off.

Rooney, who has also announced his retirement from playing, has taken the reins at the Championship club (Guardian). In a career that saw him break out for Everton, smash records at Manchester United, and play stateside, his goalscoring antics were incredible to watch.

He also, for many, epitomised the mid-2000s extravagance of modern footballers, with endless endorsement deals and column inches in celebrity magazines.

Rooney takes over from Philip Cocu, who left County in November. Derby County are currently 22nd in the Championship (BBC), and the former England international has a difficult job on his hands.

The former United goalscorer had been linked to Celtic by TalkSport contributor Jason Cundy. The former player told radio listeners (Daily Record):

“It will be interesting to see who takes the Celtic job because I can’t see Lennon hanging on after this season.

“I just wonder who might be tempted up there, because what Steven Gerrard has done, Wayne Rooney for example, Frank Lampard after he’s won the title.

“Steven Gerrard has gone up there and made a name for himself.”

Wayne Rooney taking on Celtic in the Champions League / (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

Wayne Rooney: Celtic man?

To his credit, Wayne Rooney is a self-avowed Celtic supporter. In 2014, he told Celtic TV:

“My family and I have always followed Celtic, since I was a boy anyway, so my kids have all got Celtic kits and I always look out for the scores.

As a player, Rooney was also linked to the club. In 2016, rumours floated suggesting that the former Everton man would end up at Celtic Park in the autumn of his career (HITC).

Certainly, Rooney has shown a keen interest in the club from an early age.

However, as a manager, he is in his infancy. He only began coaching with Derby County a year ago, and his ascent to the manager role has been rapid.

It was a nothing link when Jason Cundy made it, and it’s worth less now. Maybe one day we’ll see Wayne Rooney manage Celtic, but not any time soon.