‘Magician’ Wayne Rooney ‘was a force of nature at 14’: Darren Bent reveals Manchester United and England legend’s ‘annoying knack’

English football waved goodbye to one of it’s true icons with Wayne Rooney announcing his retirement from playing to take permanent charge as Derby boss.
Rooney, who’s England and Manchester United’s record goalscorer, has signed a two-and-a-half year deal with the Rams as he begins a new chapter in his life.
It’s easy to forget Rooney was so good for so long as a playerGetty Images – Getty
How will he fare in the world of management?Getty Images
Bursting onto the scene aged 16 with a stunning curled effort while playing for Everton against Arsenal in October 2002, Rooney achieved everything and more in his fantastic career.
But Darren Bent, a former England teammate of Rooney‘s at senior and youth level, revealed that was always going to happen.
Bent told talkSPORT: “He was just one of them that was a magician and there was one time we went to La Manga on an England training camp when we were young kids. He was the youngest but he was the best player by some distance.
“If I was 15 or 16 he would’ve been 14, and honestly, he was too powerful for everyone… he was a force of nature.”
Rooney proved he was a force of nature as he terrorised defences at Euro 2004 aged just 18Getty Images – Getty
Bent also revealed Rooney had an ‘annoying knack’ of showing off his huge talents on the England training ground, shedding light on a hilarious story which shows how gifted the Man United legend really was.
He explains: “Rooney always had this annoying knack of doing things he said he could do.
“At England training, we had a drinks break and were walking back to restart training and he goes, ‘Benty, come here… watch me hit this crossbar’.
“It was from the halfway line and he says, ‘I’m not just gonna hit the crossbar, I’m gonna drill it so it hits the bottom of the crossbar, bounces down and bounces back up to the roof of the net’.
“I promise he said this and I went, ‘Yeah, all right Wazza’, and he did it first time – hit the underside of the bar came down and went into the roof of the net.
“He just turned around and laughed at me. I had a go and skewed it wide!”

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