Rooney intends to play in a deeper role after a clinical performance in central midfield in the FA Cup against Everton.

Manchester United beat Everton 2-1 in the FA Cup semi finals and Rooney was a pivotal figure in midfield. His usual forward role has been taken up by younger talents like Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial and the 30-year-old captain of the Red Devils played in a deeper role and put in an impressive performance.

After the match Rooney admitted that he knew that a time would come where he would have to fall back into a midfield role, and that he is hoping to take inspiration from Manchester United legend Paul Scholes and excel in a number 8 position.

“I’ve known for a few years. I have played there a few times throughout my career and I can play that position,” said Rooney, according to SkySports.

“I have played and watched Paul Scholes play that role for years and I always knew that one day that is where I would play, so I have tried to learn and watch what he did.

“It is still early days, but hopefully, if I keep playing there, I can develop and get better.”

Rooney set to be Scholes successor

Wayne Rooney has long been criticized for being too slow to play as a lone striker. The pace and power that was once a trademark characteristic of Wazza’s forward runs has now deserted him as he looks down the wrong side of 30. However, his footballing intelligence, grit and determination remain as potent as they ever were.

The Manchester United captain displayed that with aplomb against his former club. He looked in complete control in the midfield and was instrumental in setting up attacking play, a la Michael Carrick. One notable instance was when he sent a lovely pass to Jesse Lingard that had spectators reminiscing about Paul Scholes.

Rooney may not have the feet to be a fearsome striker anymore, but he might just develop into a midfield maestro who could shape Manchester United’s future in these unsteady times.

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