Could Wayne Rooney be heading out of Old Trafford?

Wayne Rooney’s omission from the starting line up for the biggest game of the season last night has set tongues wagging that his time at Manchester United could be coming to an end.

With United’s Champions League tie against Real Madrid delicately poised at 1-1 from the first leg, Sir Alex Ferguson needed his biggest players on from the start. The decision to drop Rooney to the bench could be seen as a clear indication that his United career could soon be over.

Roy Keane who was watching the game as a pundit for ITV said: “Maybe the writing is on the wall for him. We have to trust the manager a bit tonight but in terms of the way Wayne carried on in the last year of his [previous] contract, maybe he has decided to go about getting Robin van Persie up and running.”

Ferguson brushed off the speculation saying that Rooney needed more games to get his fitness up. He said that Rooney “Did well in the second half against Norwich, but he looked like he needed a game.”

However, as Mark Ogden writes in today’s Telegraph, Rooney is the latest in a long line of big players that Ferguson has dropped for big games. Most of them are out of the Old Trafford door pretty soon after.

Ogden said:”Rooney will have been hurt and angry at his demotion and will hardly accept life as a bit-part player at United.”