Derby County boss Wayne Rooney could be open to replacing Sean Dyche at Burnley next season despite rejecting the opportunity to work under Erik ten Hag at Manchester United, according to reports. Rooney has gained plenty of admirers as a manager due to his impressive work at Derby, who will be playing in League One next season in spite of their best efforts to stay in the Championship after receiving a number of points deductions.
The former United striker has regularly insisted that his focus remains with Derby and reportedly turned down the chance to return to Old Trafford as part of Ten Hag’s backroom team a few weeks ago. However, it seems as though he would be willing to swap Pride Park for Turf Moor by taking the top job at Burnley in advance of next season, according to The Sun.
It is claimed that Rooney has been identified as Burnley’s preferred candidate to succeed Dyche, who was relieved of his duties after a run of poor results earlier this month. The Derby boss would reportedly be ‘tempted’ to join the Clarets over the coming weeks regardless of whether or not they manage to stay in the Premier League under the guidance of interim head coach Mike Jackson.
Burnley chairman Alan Pace is said to believe that Rooney would bring the necessary star quality to inspire a post-season rebuild at Turf Moor if he can be prised away from Derby in the not-too-distant future. The club are said to have a number of other names on their shortlist, though, with Chris Wilder and Sam Allardyce also believed to be among those under consideration in Lancashire.
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It remains to be seen whether Rooney will eventually take charge at Burnley in the wake of Derby’s recent relegation or if he will stay with the Rams as they go in search of an immediate return to the Championship next season. He recently turned down United’s advances to join Ten Hag’s coaching team as he was only interested in the manager’s job at Old Trafford, according to The Athletic.
Rooney is thought to be happy at Derby but has made no secret of his desire to manage a Premier League club at some point over the next few years. He admitted back in January that he was approached by Everton after the sacking of Rafa Benitez but rejected the opportunity to return to Goodison Park in order to continue his work at Derby.
“Everton approached my agent and asked me to interview for the vacant job which I turned down,” Rooney told reporters at a press conference when quizzed on his future in management.
“As I have said, I believe that I will be a Premier League manager and believe I am ready for that, 100 per cent. If that is with Everton one day in the future then that would be absolutely great.
“But I have a job here that I am doing with Derby that is an important job to me and that means getting the team ready for Sunday.”
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