The Derby County forward has opened up about the responsibilities and pressures of wearing the armband
Former Manchester United and England captain Wayne Rooney has revealed he once confronted one of his former managers on behalf of his team-mates to tell him his training sessions were “sh*t” .
Rooney has worn the captain’s armband at every club he has played for in his career so far, during spells at Everton, Manchester United, DC United and now Derby.
The Liverpool-born forward says he is aware of the responsibility that comes with the role, both on and off the pitch. That includes representing the players and speaking up on their behalf, which one on occasion led to an awkward conversation with his manager.
“When players aren’t happy, they often go to the captain and you end up being the one to present complaints. That can lead to difficult conversations,” Rooney told The Times. “At one club I was asked to go and tell the manager his training sessions were not good enough. That’s not an easy one. ‘Excuse me, gaffer. The lads think your training’s shit.’
“It can be a lot to take on. You represent the players in meetings over the squad’s charity work and commercial activities. You talk to the PFA. During Covid, what captains have needed more than anything is to be there for their players.”