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Wayne Rooney reveals talks with Rio Ferdinand after Patrice Evra’s ‘terrible’ Man United debut

Wayne Rooney admitted he spoke to Rio Ferdinand after Patrice Evra's debut at Man United
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‘Who is this? He’s terrible!’: Wayne Rooney reveals his talks with Rio Ferdinand after being shocked by Patrice Evra’s Man United debut – and says he and Nemanja Vidic ‘die after every training session’ because of the intensity

  • Wayne Rooney reflects on Patrice Evra’s ‘terrible’ debut for Manchester United
  • Evra made his United debut in the 2006 Manchester derby
  • Rooney describes the game as his only loss in his first 12 league games with City
  • He says Evra struggled with the intensity of England along with Nemanja Vidic

Manchester United legend Wayne Rooney has revealed Patrice Evra’s “terrible” start for the club in 2006.

The France full-back has become a legend in United history, having spent nine years of his career at Manchester and winning countless trophies with the Red Devils.

And Rooney claims the defender’s successful career has not been fortunate, instead pointing to Evra’s hard work after initially finding it “difficult to deal with the intensity”.

Wayne Rooney admitted he spoke to Rio Ferdinand after Patrice Evra's debut at Man United

Wayne Rooney admitted he spoke to Rio Ferdinand after Patrice Evra’s debut at Man United

The Frenchman was underwhelming after raising hopes after his arrival

The Frenchman was underwhelming after raising hopes after his arrival

Speaking to the Sunday Times, Rooney said: “You only have to look at City’s squad on that day to understand how they’ve changed as a club and my first 12 Manchester derbies in the league yielded eight wins and just A defeat.

“That was in January 2006 at the Etihad when Patrice Evra made his United debut and Fergie tied him at half-time after Trevor Sinclair had finished him off. I remember talking to Rio Ferdinand about him after the game. “Who is that? He’s awful!” We’re both laughing about that with Patrice now.”

The Frenchman joined United in the January transfer window in 2006 and has been an exciting prospect since his time at Monaco. However, a stunning debut that saw him hooked at half-time and United being beaten 3-1 by their rivals left that in doubt.

Evra was thrilled at half-time as United were defeated 3-1 by rivals Man City in 2006

Evra was thrilled at half-time as United were defeated 3-1 by rivals Man City in 2006

Rooney claims Nemanja Vidic also struggled with the intensity of the league before the adjustment

Rooney claims Nemanja Vidic also struggled with the intensity of the league before the adjustment

Rooney continued: “He has proven to be an incredible signing but I think both he and Nemanja Vidic – who has also just signed and has been struggling – have found it difficult to cope with the intensity of Premier League games and training will.

“They came into full swing, but I remember in the first month of training they died after every session.”

Nemanja Vidic, who eventually formed a solid partnership with Ferdinand, joined the Red Devils in the same window as Evra – he signed from Russian club Spartak Moscow.

Both players went through a transition after joining United before becoming regulars for Sir Alex Ferguson a year later, lifting the club’s first league title in four years in 2006/07.

The two defenders won five Premier League titles during their United careers

The two defenders won five Premier League titles during their United careers

In the same interview, Rooney admitted that his overhead kick against Manchester City in 2011 wasn’t the best goal of his career.

The former England captain said he was “terrible” in the game and pointed to his volley against Newcastle in 2005 as “better technically”.

“The funny thing is I was terrible in the game,” he said. Even my dismissal to Paul Scholes before he handed it far to Nani to cross was scruffy and bouncy – a bad mark. But who remembers?’

“Of course I love the goal. But I would say that the volley I shot against Newcastle in 2005 was better from a technical point of view.

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