Alex Ferguson says Wayne Rooney has a "presence about him" and is hopeful the legendary forward will succeed in management after announcing his retirement from playing.

Rooney was officially named as Derby County boss on Friday, two months after replacing Phillip Cocu as interim coach.

The 35-year-old enjoyed an incredible playing career that spanned nearly two decades, during which time he won 16 trophies at Manchester United, the majority of those under Ferguson.

He retires as United and England's all-time leading goalscorer and while Ferguson believes that will be an advantage for Rooney, he warned the former forward results were all that mattered as a coach.

"He is England’s top goalscorer, he is Manchester United’s top goalscorer and he has had a fantastic career as a player and it will give him a starting point," Ferguson said on the 'A Team Talk With Legends' panel on Friday.

"But like anyone else it is a results industry and you need to get results. He will know that better than anyone.

"He has had a good start… and he has knowledge of the game, a presence about him and I hope he does well.

"It is a big step for him. He is quite a wealthy young man now with his career in football, so he probably doesn't need to go into management to look after his family, but he wants to do it and that is important.

"There is no point being a manager because someone asks you to be. He went there as a player-coach, he then become player-manager and now he has the manager's job and that's what he wanted. Hopefully he does well.”

England manager Gareth Southgate was also pleased to see Rooney take the helm at Derby.

Rooney joins former England team-mates Steven Gerrard (Rangers), Frank Lampard (Chelsea) and Scott Parker (Fulham) in management.

"He has had an incredible career. I am pleased we have the likes of Wayne, Steven, Frank and Scott Parker – we don't want too many [Jamie] Carraghers sitting on the sofa because those good football brains are gone from the game," Southgate said.

"What you want from an England perspective is young English managers and ex-players to come in and add to the game and help develop young players.

"Those lads have brilliant experiences and it will be a huge challenge of course, but Wayne loves football, has a fantastic brain for football and I wish I had the chance to manage him five years earlier – not be the one to leave him out of the England squad, I'd rather be the one picking him at his peak."

Wayne Rooney called time on one of the greatest playing careers in English football on Friday, vowing: "I wouldn't change a thing."

Since springing to prominence with a stunning goal as a 16-year-old for Everton against Arsenal in 2002, Rooney has achieved feat after feat in the game.

He retires as the record scorer for both Manchester United and England, having won 120 caps and captained his country, and will focus on his new full-time job as manager of Derby County.

Gary Lineker, third on England's all-time goalscoring list behind Rooney and Bobby Charlton, said the new Rams boss had enjoyed "a truly wonderful career on the field".

What is clear is that the 35-year-old Rooney is relishing a career in management, and he has shown impressive early aptitude, with Derby conceding only four goals and losing just twice in their nine league matches under his caretaker leadership.

"For me, to try and help the club get back to its glory days is a massive opportunity," Rooney said.

"My future is in management. I’ve had a great career with a few ups and a few downs, but I wouldn't change anything. But now, I'd like to write some history in my managerial career.

"My whole life has been playing football, so I'm fortunate that I'm still part of it. It's a new chapter for me.

"Will I miss playing? Of course. But, time doesn't stop. I've had my time, it's time for the younger generation to have their time and for me to guide them."

Former England team-mate Steven Gerrard, who is now managing title-chasing Rangers in Scotland, said it had been an "honour" to play alongside Rooney and wished him "good luck" at Derby.

Rooney, who has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with the Championship club, is close to lifting Derby out of the relegation zone having taken over at a time when they sat rooted to the foot of the table.

His last competitive match as a player, assuming there is no U-turn, will have been the 3-0 defeat to Middlesbrough on November 25.

He won five Premier League titles with United, along with a Champions League and FA Cup and EFL Cup successes, and in the 2009-10 season he was named PFA Player of the Year.

During his Old Trafford career, which ran from 2004 to 2017, he scored 253 goals, while he netted 53 for England.

Wayne Rooney has been appointed the new Derby County manager after impressing as interim boss.

The former Manchester United and England captain has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with the Championship club.

Rooney, 35, has overseen three wins and four draws in nine games since taking temporary charge back in November after Phillip Cocu was sacked with the Rams bottom of the table. They are now 22nd and only in the relegation zone due to goal difference.

The decision to take over as full-time boss means Rooney has officially brought his illustrious playing career to an end.

"When I first arrived back in the United Kingdom I was completely blown away by the potential of Derby County Football Club," Rooney said in a statement. "The stadium, training ground, the quality of the playing staff and the young players coming through and of course the fan base that has remained loyal and supportive.

"Despite other offers I knew instinctively Derby County was the place for me.

"To be given the opportunity to follow the likes of Brian Clough, Jim Smith, Frank Lampard and Phillip Cocu is such an honour and I can promise everyone in involved in the club and all our fans, my staff and I will leave no stone unturned in achieving the potential I have witnessed over the last 12 months of this historic football club."

Rooney's impressive impact upon results has come despite turmoil around the club, including a wage delay, a protracted takeover by Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nahyan and a coronavirus outbreak that forced the closure of the training ground.

Derby kept five clean sheets, conceded only four goals and lost just twice in their first nine matches under Rooney. No side conceded fewer goals in that time and only Brentford suffered fewer defeats (zero).

Rooney initially joined Derby in a player-coach role in January 2020 after spending two years in MLS with DC United.

England and Manchester United's all-time record goalscorer played 35 times for the Rams, the last of which was in a 3-0 defeat to Middlesbrough on November 25.

Liam Rosenior, Shay Given and Justin Walker will all stay on in Rooney's backroom team, with Rosenior named assistant manager. Former England boss Steve McClaren will continue as technical director.

Marcus Rashford has described not playing for Manchester United great Alex Ferguson as his only regret in football.

Rashford made his United debut as an 18-year-old in 2016, just under three years after Ferguson had retired as the manager at Old Trafford.

The England international had been in the United academy since the age of seven, overlapping with Ferguson's hugely successful tenure, but would never work directly with the Scot.

Rashford discussed Ferguson after receiving the Football Writers' Association's Tribute award for his work campaigning to end child poverty in the United Kingdom.

Ferguson has backed the United striker and spoken to him personally, and Rashford told the FWA: "For me, it was an unbelievable experience.

"For me, that's probably the only regret I've ever had in my career: never getting the chance to play under Sir Alex. It's something that is never going to happen now.

"To be on the phone with him and just have 10, 15 minutes conversation was amazing."

Rashford did get the opportunity to play alongside United's record goalscorer Wayne Rooney, however, and was effusive in his praise of the former England captain.

"Me and Wayne are different players, we play a lot different on the pitch," Rashford said.

"But in terms of the way he showed his versatility on the pitch, he's what I would consider one of the best players the Premier League has ever seen. You could put him anywhere on the pitch and he just has that football understanding.

"There's a few other players like that, like [Paul] Scholes, where you could play them anywhere and they'll make things happen and they'll give you a good performance.

"For me, despite all the goals he scored, that's one of the things that stood out to me. At the time, I think he was playing number 10 when I first came in, sometimes midfield and sometimes as the number nine.

"I just saw the professional side of it. He was always ready to play and give his best when he was on the pitch. That probably made me mature a little bit as well, seeing how professional he was.

"I'd been a fan of his since I was a kid, watching him score goals left, right and centre, so the goals I knew he was scoring, but this side of it was new to me and I'm glad that I got to experience that."

Ferguson and Rooney were both previous recipients of the FWA Tribute award, along with Scholes, Ryan Giggs and David Beckham, three other modern United greats.

"As a kid, you want to follow in the footsteps of people you see as heroes," Rashford said.

"I know on my journey to the first team, it was all about doing the things that they'd done, making the same starts that they'd made to get into the same position that they were in.

"I've been lucky enough to be able to experience that journey and make my way into the first team like they did.

"To get this award and for them to have had it before me is an amazing feeling."

But Rashford is not done, having this week continued his work by highlighting the poor quality of free meals given to children, again forcing change.

"We're at the beginning of what I see as a long journey," he added. "I'm definitely not at the stage of relief yet; I feel like there's a lot more that needs to be done and a lot more steps that need to be taken forward."

A familiar pairing helped Tottenham return to winning ways in the Premier League this weekend. 

Harry Kane and Son Heung-min were both on target as Jose Mourinho's side ended a four-match winless streak in the competition with a comfortable 3-0 triumph over Leeds United. 

Their rapport has been one of the defining stories of the season but, away from north London, several other games produced some interesting statistics.

With the help of Opta data, we take a look at some of the quirkiest stats from the weekend's action, with Leicester City's win at Newcastle United a source of a couple of fascinating facts.

 

Kane and Son combine again

Harry Kane and Son Heung-min's almost telepathic understanding was on show again in Tottenham's defeat of Leeds.

The South Korea international swept in Kane's pass to become the 18th Spurs player to score 100 goals for the club in all competitions on what was his 253rd appearance.

Kane has now assisted nine goals for Son in the Premier League, while the South Korean has laid on four for the England captain in the 2020-21 season – no two players have linked up more in a single season in the competition.

They have plenty of time left to leapfrog Alan Shearer and Chris Sutton, who combined 13 times during Blackburn Rovers' 1994-95 title-winning season. 

Evergreen Vardy keeps on going

Jamie Vardy might be 33 but the Leicester striker is showing no signs of slowing down. 

His assist for James Maddison's opener in the 2-1 win over Newcastle at the weekend means he has been directly involved in 98 Premier League goals since turning 30 (80 goals and 18 assists). 

He leapfrogged Paolo Di Canio to move joint-sixth with Manchester United icon Ryan Giggs in the all-time list for most Premier League goal involvements aged 30-plus. 

He is now within touching distance of Gianfranco Zola (101) and Shearer (102), with Ian Wright in third with 110 involvements. 

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is second with 118, while Teddy Sheringham leads the way with 127 (77 goals and 50 assists).

Tierney waves tartan flag for Gunners

Arsenal do not have a rich lineage of Scottish players during the Premier League era, but left-back Kieran Tierney is doing his best to change that.

The former Celtic man became the first Scottish player to score an away Premier League goal for the Gunners in their thumping of West Brom and the first to do so in the top flight since Charlie Nicholas in March 1986. 

The 23-year-old cut inside from the left flank and curled a brilliant finish beyond Sam Johnstone to open the scoring, before then going on to tee up Alexandre Lacazette's second goal in the rout of Sam Allardyce's woeful Baggies.

Tierney – who has been tipped as a future Arsenal captain by boss Mikel Arteta – only needs one more goal to join Paul Dickov (three) as the Gunners' top-scoring Scottish player in the Premier League.

Carroll ends lengthy wait for Magpies goal

Newcastle tasted defeat against the Foxes but they could at least toast a return to the scoresheet after an almighty break for Andy Carroll. 

Only Wayne Rooney has had a longer gap between Premier League goals for the same club than Carroll, who netted for the first time of his second Magpies spell.

Carroll's goal was his first for Newcastle since he re-joined the club in 2019-20. The former Liverpool and West Ham forward had last netted for the Magpies on Boxing Day 2010, in a 3-1 defeat to Manchester City.

With a gap of 10 years and eight days between his strikes for Newcastle, Carroll is behind only Rooney for the largest stretch of time between two goals for the same club in the Premier League.

Rooney scored on the opening day of the 2017-18 season for Everton, 13 years and 121 days after his last goal for the Toffees in the 2003-04 season.

Only Wayne Rooney has had a longer gap between Premier League goals for the same club than Andy Carroll, who netted for the first time of his second Newcastle United spell in a 2-1 loss to Leicester City.

Carroll, who turns 32 on Wednesday, made his ninth top-flight appearance of the season on Sunday, coming on as a 79th-minute substitute with Steve Bruce's side 2-0 down to goals from James Maddison and Youri Tielemans.

He scored within three minutes, thumping in a well-timed volley to haul Newcastle back into the contest, though the Foxes ultimately held firm to secure their seventh away win of the season.

Leicester are the 19th different top-flight side to win at least seven of their first nine away games of a season – none of the previous 18 have finished outside of the top four.

Carroll's goal was his first for Newcastle since he re-joined the club in 2019-20.

The former Liverpool and West Ham forward had last netted for the Magpies on Boxing Day 2010, in a 3-1 defeat to Manchester City.

Coincidentally, his only two league goals for Liverpool in 2010-11 – following a reported £35million move – also came against City.

With a gap of 10 years and eight days between his strikes for Newcastle, Carroll is behind only Rooney for the longest length of time between two goals for the same club in the Premier League.

Rooney scored on the opening day of the 2017-18 season for Everton, 13 years and 121 days after his last goal for the Toffees in the 2003-04 season.

Marcus Rashford became the third-youngest player to score 50 Premier League goals for Manchester United as he opened the scoring against Leicester City.

Having missed a great chance in the opening minutes when he headed over from Bruno Fernandes' cross, Rashford slotted home his sixth league goal of the season to put United 1-0 up against the Foxes.

Aged 23 years and 56 days, Rashford is behind only Wayne Rooney (22 years and 157 days) and Cristiano Ronaldo (22 years 341 days) in terms of the youngest United players to reach a half-century of Premier League goals.

Rashford's opener – which was set up by Fernandes, who has been directly involved in over half of United's Premier League goals since his debut (30/59), scoring 17 and assisting a further 13 – also saw the Red Devils open the scoring in an away game in the top-flight for the first time since July 26, also against Leicester.

United's lead lasted just eight minutes, however, as Harvey Barnes thumped in a brilliant equaliser for Brendan Rodgers' team.

Fernandes played his part again, conceding possession in United's defensive third, with Barnes ensuring the visitors were punished. The winger has scored seven goals in 20 games in all competitions this season, equalling his tally from the 2019-20 campaign (seven in 42 appearances).

The days of a Rooney scoring spectacular strikes for Manchester United might not be done for good.

Wayne Rooney's record of 253 goals for the Old Trafford outfit remains unmatched, but his son Kai may soon be in pursuit of that benchmark.

The 11-year-old, the former England captain's oldest child, signed for United on Thursday, his dad revealed on Instagram.

The interim Derby County boss uploaded a picture of Kai signing papers at United next to a Rooney number 10 shirt.

"Proud day," Wayne wrote. "Kai signing for @manchesterunited. Keep up the hard work son."

Rooney famously made his Everton debut at just 16, meaning Kai could soon be on the big stage if he can match his father's meteoric trajectory.

Frank Lampard believes John Terry could be the ideal man to lift Derby County from the doldrums.

Although Wayne Rooney is in interim charge at Pride Park, there is no guarantee the former Manchester United striker will become permanent manager of the Championship club.

Now 39-year-old Terry, who is assistant manager at Aston Villa, is being linked with the job.

It would be a first experience of being manager of a club for the former Chelsea and England captain, a team-mate of Lampard with club and country.

But with Lampard having spent a year as Derby boss before being handed the Stamford Bridge top job, he sees it as an ideal club for Terry.

"I think John is destined to be a manager. He is obviously working very well alongside Dean Smith over the last few years at Aston Villa, so would have been learning a lot," Lampard said.

"But what John knows and his experiences in the game as a player will be huge, I know that from playing alongside him so long what he has to offer.

"I think it is a great opportunity potentially for him if true and for Derby."

Former England manager Steve McClaren has been helping out Rooney, but it remains to be seen if the club's owners wish to retain that partnership.

Terry may be seen as a man with not only the passion but the right kind of coaching experience to step in and lift the club off the foot of the table.

Speaking in a Chelsea news conference on Tuesday, Lampard added: "John will be a hungry, ambitious manager, whether it's Derby or whatever other opportunities come his way as he goes along.

"I don't know anything [about the Derby link] but John is going to be a fantastic coach in my opinion."

Former Manchester United and England captain Wayne Rooney will be in sole charge of Derby County this weekend as he takes his first steps in management.

Rooney, a player-coach at Derby, has shared responsibility of the first team since Phillip Cocu was sacked earlier this month.

The veteran forward was joined by Liam Rosenior, Shay Given and Justin Walker in the coaching set-up, but the Rams lost at both Bristol City and Middlesbrough without scoring.

Hindered by a points deduction, Derby are bottom of the Championship table, six points shy of safety and winless in nine.

With a takeover imminent, the club have made a change, promoting Rooney in a decision the new interim coach hopes will provide "clarity".

Rooney, who will not play at home against Wycombe on Saturday, revealed technical director and former England boss Steve McClaren - returning to Derby this week - was "part of that conversation".

"For the two previous games, the four of us did it together, preparing the team and picking the team together," Rooney said.

"We felt that it needed one voice, one person to do that and make the decisions on the team, the starting team and obviously the subs coming into the game.

"We felt I felt I was the right man for that. That's where we're at.

"It's obviously exciting for me to do that. Management is something I've always said I wanted to go into. It's an opportunity for me to try to pick the right team to get us a positive result."

Despite his eagerness to kickstart his coaching career, Rooney refused to look beyond Saturday's match.

"Tomorrow is so important to us that we have to focus on tomorrow," he said. "We can't focus on what happens in the long term just yet.

"There will be conversations, obviously, but we have to focus on tomorrow and can't look too far ahead. It wouldn't be fair on the players to be looking at what happens in the next few weeks.

"We have to solely focus on tomorrow's game and then the new owners will be in, I'm sure, in the next few days. Once that's complete, there will conversations and we'll see where that goes.

"I wouldn't sit here and say I'm auditioning myself for the job. This football club deserves better than that. It deserves better than someone saying they're having an audition."

Rooney believes he could not juggle the new role with playing - at least for now.

"Obviously I played the last game, but if I'm making decisions on who plays the game and doesn't play the game and the preparation of the team, I wouldn't be able to give it my full attention and still be part of the game," he said.

"I won't be involved in the game tomorrow. I'll be focusing on getting the team right to play the game."

Asked if he would miss the opportunity to use a player of his talents on the pitch, Rooney replied: "Of course, but as I said before, this is what I want to do, this is what I see myself doing.

"As much as you'd like to carry on playing for as long as you can, there comes a point where you have to make decisions. For tomorrow, I think it's the right decision."

Wayne Rooney has backed Dominic Calvert-Lewin to build on his impressive start with England, believing the Everton forward deserved an opportunity at international level ahead of Tammy Abraham. 

Calvert-Lewin scored 15 goals in all competitions for his club in the 2019-20 season but had to patiently wait for his chance at international level.

However, a great start to the new campaign led to a debut for the 23-year-old against Wales this month. He seized the opportunity, finding the net in a 3-0 triumph for Gareth Southgate's side at Wembley.

Abraham, meanwhile, made his England bow back in 2017, his chance coming at a time when he was still yet to break into the first-team picture at Chelsea. 

In his column for the Sunday Times, Rooney raised concerns over players based in the north having to "work harder" to get an England call-up.

On Calvert-Lewin, Rooney stated: "For England, he can become an important member of the squad and it's great seeing him finally recognised at international level. 

"I've always thought young lads from the north have to work harder to get their England opportunities than boys from the big southern clubs.  

"I felt Calvert-Lewin deserved his chance before Chelsea's Tammy Abraham."

Calvert-Lewin has scored seven times in the Premier League already this term, helping Carlo Ancelotti's Everton make the early running. 

Rooney saw the forward at close quarters when he returned for a second spell at his boyhood club and has praised the work done by coach Duncan Ferguson in Calvert-Lewin's development. 

"Dominic always had it in him and the big question mark was whether he could score consistently enough, but now that is coming through game time," Rooney continued.

"When I returned to Everton he was entering his second season with the club. I looked at him in training and thought 'he has everything'. 

"He was quick, strong, good in the air. His only downfall was he was snatching at chances but he was already working hard to correct that and Duncan Ferguson deserves a lot of credit because Duncan would always stay with him after training and give him finishing drills." 

Tottenham fans got to see Gareth Bale don the famous shirt once more in Sunday's Premier League clash with West Ham.

The Wales star came off the bench at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium for his first appearance in England's top flight since May 2013, but it proved a frustrating outing.

From 3-0 up when Bale was introduced in the 72nd minute, Tottenham were pegged back as the game finished in a 3-3 draw.

The 31-year-old, who previously played for Spurs between 2007 and 2013, joined Jose Mourinho's side on loan from Real Madrid after winning four Champions Leagues with Los Blancos.

Bale had only 25 goal involvements (17 goals, eight assists) across his final two seasons with Madrid, having managed 61 (38 goals, 23 assists) in his last two campaigns with Tottenham.

Players returning to clubs where they enjoyed great success is nothing new, but are the second acts ever as good as those we witness first?

DIEGO MARADONA - BOCA JUNIORS

One of the world's greatest players, Maradona completed a dream transfer from Argentinos Juniors to Boca in 1981, going on to score 28 times in 40 league games for the club he supported as a boy. With the lure of Europe, a world-record transfer to Barcelona followed, but Maradona finished his career back in Argentina with Boca. However, by that point he was a shadow of his former self, scoring just seven times in 30 appearances from 1995 to 1997.

Key stat: Maradona played in 10 Primera Division seasons in his home country, though he would win just one piece of silverware - the 1981 Metropolitano - in his first stint at Boca.

ROBBIE FOWLER - LIVERPOOL

Known as 'God' at Anfield, Fowler was the homegrown hero who led the line for the Reds for much of the 1990s. He was sold to Leeds United in 2001, having had a difficult relationship with manager Gerard Houllier, who preferred Michael Owen and Emile Heskey in attack. After a spell at Manchester City, Fowler returned to Liverpool on a free in 2006, but the three league goals he scored in 2006-07 were all penalties.

Key stat: Fowler remains Liverpool's all-time leading scorer in the Premier League having netted 128 times in 266 games.

WAYNE ROONEY - EVERTON

Another talented Merseyside youngster, Rooney made a memorable breakthrough at Everton with a brilliant winner against Arsenal in 2002, though his relationship with fans of his boyhood club soured when he joined Manchester United, for whom he became the club's record scorer. Relations thawed over time and Rooney came 'home' for 2017-18 - but he was often deployed in a deeper midfield position in his second spell.

Key stat: Rooney scored 10 times in the Premier League during his second stint at Goodison Park - the only time he reached double figures for Everton in a league campaign.

KAKA - MILAN

The Brazilian enjoyed a fruitful six years at San Siro, winning the 2007 Ballon d'Or, a Serie A title and a Champions League while scoring 70 goals and providing 48 assists in 193 league games. Kaka never truly hit those heights again as a Real Madrid Galactico and returned to Milan for 2013-14, though he was unable to rediscover his magic.

Key stat: The forward averaged a goal involvement every 131 minutes in his initial spell with Milan, but that fell to 219 minutes second time around.

MARIO GOTZE - BORUSSIA DORTMUND

A product of BVB's youth academy, Gotze, like his team-mates Robert Lewandowski and Mats Hummels, was eventually lured to rivals Bayern Munich. The midfielder, who scored the winning goal for Germany in the 2014 World Cup final, struggled at times for form and fitness during three seasons with Bayern and that continued back at Dortmund, where he spent four more seasons before leaving earlier this year. Gotze has since joined Dutch giants PSV.

Key stat: Gotze scored 22 goals at a rate of one every 263 minutes in his first four-season spell with Dortmund. During his second stint, he scored 13 at a rate of one every 351 minutes.

ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIC - MILAN

Of course it is the enigmatic Swede who proves things can be just as good second time around. Ibrahimovic enjoyed a brilliant two-season run at Milan between 2010 and 2012 - scoring 42 times and providing 17 assists in 61 Serie A games. Ibrahimovic returned to Milan in January and, in 20 Serie A games so far, he has scored 14 goals and assisted five more.

Key stat: Ibrahimovic's minutes-per-goal involvement stood at one every 91 minutes in his first Milan spell, and this time around on average he has played a part in a goal every 81.3 minutes.

Wayne Rooney has questioned Manchester United's "odd" approach of making Jadon Sancho their number one transfer target rather than Harry Kane.

Borussia Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc has insisted Sancho will not be sold before the transfer window closes on Monday.

United have been unwilling to meet the Bundesliga club's €120million (£108m) asking price for the England winger, so the 20-year-old is set to remain in Germany.

It emerged this weekend that United are closing in on signing former Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani.

Rooney believes they should have gone all in for Tottenham and England frontman Kane, who will face United in a Premier League clash at Old Trafford on Sunday.

"Jadon Sancho is a top player, but I find it odd that he has been Manchester United's transfer priority," Rooney, who is United's record goalscorer, said in his column for The Sunday Times.

"Why consider paying close to £100million for someone similar to talent you've got already? United have Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial and where would Sancho's arrival leave Mason Greenwood, who plays in the same position and is of similar age?

"I'd rather put that £100million towards trying to get Harry Kane. Yes, getting Kane out of Tottenham would be difficult, maybe impossible, but United are a club who should always make an effort to sign the very best players and Kane is exactly what Ole Gunnar Solskjaer needs, as is Erling Haaland, who United missed out on last year - a genuine number nine.

"A Kane or Haaland or someone like Robert Lewandowski would give Rashford and Martial someone to play off and freedom to roam into different areas, pick the ball up and try to beat men - without the burden of always having to score."

Wolves have pulled off what will likely be one of the coups of the transfer window in securing a club-record deal for the highly rated Fabio Silva.

The 18-year-old forward joins in a reported €40million (£35.6m) transfer, signing a five-year contract to further expand Wolves' significant Portuguese contingent.

Executive chairman Jeff Shi confirmed his signing had come at the request of head coach Nuno Espirito Santo and it sees Wolves secure a talent strongly linked with Real Madrid and Liverpool in the past.

The deal makes Silva the seventh costliest teenager in history, and he joins illustrious company, as outlined below…

Kylian Mbappe: Monaco to Paris Saint-Germain - €180m

Likely to remain the world's most expensive teenage signing for some time, Kylian Mbappe is already well on the way to justifying the €180m outlay PSG made to prise him away from Monaco three years ago. Mbappe had fired Monaco to a shock Ligue 1 title triumph before departing and his goals have continued to flow in the French capital. Still just 21, Mbappe has arguably eclipsed team-mate Neymar already, while he has won a World Cup with France. Pele has acknowledged comparisons with the forward, who looks a certain Ballon d'Or winner in the near future. It would take a world-record fee to buy Mbappe, but he has hinted he could be open to leaving PSG.

Joao Felix: Benfica to Atletico Madrid - €126m

Potentially rivalling Mbappe for top individual honours in the years to come could be Joao Felix, who was tasked with replacing Antoine Griezmann at Atletico Madrid following his move to Barcelona. Joao Felix hit 20 goals in all competitions for Benfica in 2018-19, three of those strikes coming in the Europa League, to announce himself among the world's top talents. He endured a difficult first season in Spain, as he appeared to struggle with a new position, setup and philosophy under Diego Simeone's tutelage, but some promising flashes towards the end of the campaign suggested the player compared to Kaka could establish himself in 2020-21.

Matthijs de Ligt: Ajax to Juventus - €85.5m

Barcelona were linked with De Ligt, having already sealed a deal for club and country team-mate Frenkie de Jong, but the Ajax captain instead opted for Serie A. Much like Joao Felix at Atletico, De Ligt did not have the most convincing of debut seasons, despite Juve going on to win another Serie A title. Nevertheless, after a year bedding in, 2020-21 might see the Dutchman recapture his best form as he will likely become an even more central figure under Andrea Pirlo.

Anthony Martial: Monaco to Manchester United - €60m

Eyebrows were raised when United parted with €60m for Martial in 2015, with one British newspaper describing the deal as a "waste of money" in a back-page splash. While it might have taken him a while - after a blistering start - to properly establish himself, struggling particularly under Jose Mourinho, the Frenchman is beginning to make good on his potential at 24. With 17 goals in 32 Premier League games in 2019-20, Martial appeared to cement himself as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first-choice centre-forward and formed a dynamic front three with Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood. He also earned a recall to the France squad, with 2020-21 looking like a season of endless possibilities for Martial.


Rodrygo Goes: Santos to Real Madrid - €45m

Real Madrid have been signing young talent in recent seasons in a departure from their Galactico-focused days, although the arrival of Eden Hazard did show they are still willing to splash out on ready-made superstars. Rodrygo Goes linked up with Zinedine Zidane's squad for 2019-20 having remained on loan with Santos after completing his initial transfer to the Spanish giants. The tricky forward showed plenty of promise in his first season and seemed to usurp Vinicius Junior in the pecking order at times. Madrid hope he can be their Neymar.


Vinicius Junior: Flamengo to Real Madrid - €45m

Rodrygo followed in the footsteps of fellow Brazilian Vinicius, who was a rare shining light for Madrid in 2018-19, scoring two LaLiga goals. In his second season, Vinicius was in and out of the team, but did enjoy a few stints of regular football. Flashy, flamboyant and difficult to tackle, Vinicius is a classic Brazilian wide player, though concerns about his end product remain despite having been at the club for a while now. Nevertheless, Vinicius could be Madrid's future along with Rodrygo.

Fabio Silva: Porto to Wolves - €40m

Silva became Porto's youngest-ever player in 2019 when he made his debut for the first-team less than a month after his 17th birthday – the previous record-holder was his new Wolves team-mate, Ruben Neves. The technically gifted forward, who has been suggested as the potential long-term heir to Cristiano Ronaldo, helped Porto to UEFA Youth League success in 2018-19 and has regularly caught the eye in Portugal's youth setup. Although he only scored three times in 20 appearances with Porto in 2019-20, Silva appears destined for a future at the top, with his technique and on-the-ball talents seemingly a good fit for Wolves' dynamic attacking options.

Luke Shaw: Southampton to Manchester United - €37.5m

Like Martial, Luke Shaw is another player who seems to have laboured under a large price tag at times. Shaw also had a fractious relationship with Mourinho but made the United left-back spot his own with 29 Premier League starts in 2018-19. The 24-year-old remained a regular last term, despite the emergence of Brandon Williams, and managed to stay relatively injury-free, but one rarely gets the impression his position in the squad is absolutely certain, particularly given his attacking output lacks in comparison to the world's best full-backs.


Wayne Rooney: Everton to Manchester United - €37m

Wayne Rooney certainly repaid his fee – he was British football's most expensive teenager – becoming United's all-time leading goalscorer and winning five Premier League titles at the club, as well as the 2007-08 Champions League. Rooney will go down as a United great despite affairs such as agitating for a move and falling out with Alex Ferguson. Rooney dropped out of favour in the latter years of his time at Old Trafford and was also sidelined for England, with a return to boyhood club Everton failing to spark. But joining MLS strugglers DC United was a clever move and Rooney helped inspire their rise. Now 34, he is back in England with Derby County.


Renato Sanches: Benfica to Bayern Munich - €35m

Bayern thought they were signing a player who would become one of the era's dominant midfielders when they snapped up Renato Sanches from Benfica, but the transfer did not work out at all. Bayern bought Sanches before he won Euro 2016 with Portugal but, four years later, that remains the highlight of his career. Sanches flopped in a loan spell with Swansea City in the Premier League and quickly appeared surplus to requirements at Bayern. He eventually secured a permanent move away last year when Die Roten recouped €25m for him - applaudable given his form - when selling him to Lille. But in France he seems to have found his feet again, enjoying a solid debut season and attracting interest from around Europe.

Former Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney has expressed his support for Harry Maguire, who is appealing against a conviction by a Greek court.

Maguire was found guilty of aggravated assault, resisting arrest, and repeated attempts of bribery at a misdemeanours court in Syros on Tuesday.

The 27-year-old, who denied all charges against him, was tried alongside two other defendants following an alleged incident involving police the week before while he was holidaying on the nearby island of Mykonos.

United confirmed Maguire's legal representatives have lodged an appeal and, as per Greek law, the initial conviction has therefore been nullified and a full retrial "in a more senior court" will now take place.

Maguire, who could reportedly face a long wait for his retrial, was dropped from the England squad following his conviction after initially being called up by Gareth Southgate.

The England manager had told reporters before removing the defender from the squad: "I've spoken with Harry, I have insight into the story which is very different to what's been reported."

Speaking to talkSPORT on Thursday, Rooney said of Maguire: "Knowing Harry the way I know him, it's completely not his character.

"I couldn't get my head around how it went to court, he was found guilty and sentenced all within the space of about two hours… how has that happened?

"Harry's not that type of person at all. He was out there with his girlfriend, his family and friends and their girlfriends, so it's not a group of lads, where sometimes things happen. So, in my opinion, something has gone on that has maybe provoked him.

"It's just out of character, it's not him at all. I just think as a nation, as people, we are too quick to judge.

"Obviously he was found guilty and there's an appeal, so at the minute there's no charges now against his name until the next court date.

"Obviously I've made my own mistakes and I've had my issues with the law, both in England and abroad as well, so I know how difficult that can be. But I just think with Harry, he's not that character at all.

"I've also heard people saying, 'why doesn't he hire a villa and stay in a villa?'

"But why should he? He's a human being!"

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