OVERWHELMING support given to Wayne Rooney from Manchester United fans during last night’s goalless draw against Chelsea at Old Trafford will convince the striker to shun the overtures of the Blues and remain with the Premier League champions, fears Jose Mourinho.
Mourinho has failed with bids of £20m and £25m already this summer to poach Rooney from the champions, with opposite number David Moyes continually adamant he intends to keep hold of the England frontman.
Rooney had expressed his desire to leave in the close season after Moyes suggested he may have to contend with playing second fiddle to last season’s top scorer Robin van Persie.
However, Rooney was named in United’s starting XI last night for the first time since 28 April and cheered throughout by the home supporters in an accomplished display.
And Mourinho now believes his chances of completing a deal for Rooney are slim.
“This club must be a very special club, because at every club in the world when a player wants to leave they don’t support him, they give him a hard time,” said Mourinho.
“But they supported him all the way and now if he decides he wants to stay we would be the first to respect that and say it’s over.”
However, the Portuguese boss would not rule out making a renewed bid for Rooney ahead of Monday’s deadline, though challenged the 27-year-old to make his intentions public.
“If he doesn’t want to leave we’re out of it but we need to know what is happening,” he added. “It depends on his reaction and feelings.
“I think it’s time, for the good of everyone, to finish the story.”
Chelsea now look set to turn their attention towards signing former Barcelona striker Samuel Eto’o, who has been made available for transfer by current club Anzhi Makhachkala.
However, Mourinho would not be drawn on the possibility of a reunion with the 32-year-old who he signed for Inter Milan in 2009.
“We’re going to choose another player if Rooney isn’t coming,” he said.
“But we don’t speak about another teams’ players. It’s dangerous.”
Mourinho was more forthcoming about the future of midfielder Juan Mata, who was left on the bench for last night’s draw, despite Chelsea fielding an unorthodox formation which included six midfield players.
Nonetheless, Mourinho insists the 25-year-old still has a future at Stamford Bridge.
“He is very important for me, for Chelsea,” added Mourinho.
“He goes nowhere and is very important for me.
“He had a very small pre-season after the Confederations Cup, during that small pre-season he was injured. He started training two days before we played the first Premier League match.
“But no chance Juan goes anywhere.”