For those of you who do not know him, Wayne Rooney is a very exceptional football player that has recently gone through some hard times in his private life.  This seems to have had an effect on his on pitch performance, to such an extent that he resigned from his team mates and club to seek his fortune elsewhere.

The dilemma for the team coach was very tough, by federation football law, he is not allowed to let him go to another club for another three months, so what should he do?  The way I see it, is that he basically only had two key options:

1.    Keep him on the bench and let the team get on without him?  (Bear in mind Rooney is exceptionally talented and when he is playing well he wins games and inspires everyone around him).
2.    Play him, even though he is not on form and does not want to play anymore and his playing might disrupt the team?

Last week, before the recent news, I was chatting this dilemma through with a colleague, and together we came up with the following scenario:

Brief the Chairman of the club to give Mr. Rooney the following pep talk:

“Wayne, we do not need to go into why, but recently your performance on pitch has been very unsatisfactory (way, way below what you and I know you are capable of).  You have declared to the world that you want to leave your team mates and our club.  The way I see it is that if you do not play for the next three months, you will not have a chance to show your potential buyers that your problems are behind you and your magic is not lost for good. Not playing will seriously affect your transfer value.
If, on the other hand you play and score goals, your value will go up significantly because your potential buyers will see that you are back in form and able to handle pressure.  However if you decide to play for us for the next three months you will need to overcome two very tough challenges:
1. You will need to apologize to the coach and persuade him to keep playing you, and
2. You will need to demonstrate to the team that you are worthy of their respect and support.  If you don’t they will simply ignore you on the pitch by not passing the ball to you at each and every goal scoring opportunity.  
The way I see it is that it is entirely down to you.  I suggest you give the options some serious consideration and let me know when you have made up your mind.  Do not answer too quickly and regret it, but do not take too long either, otherwise the two options you have might only become one.”

Now we know what Wayne Rooney has actually decided to do (see here) , but what would you have done if you were Wayne Rooney’s coach?

Have a good week,