‘Utter disgrace’: Fury at news English FA ‘won’t donate ticket money to charity’ from Rooney match
‘The Wayne Rooney Foundation International’ will see England play the USA in a friendly game at Wembley Stadium on November 15, with Rooney controversially expected to come out of international retirement to feature towards the end of the match.
The 33-year-old is England’s all-time top scorer on 53 goals, and with 119 caps has made the most appearances of any outfield player.
His international career had seemingly ended when he last played for England against Scotland in November 2016, after which he was overlooked by manager Gareth Southgate, prompting his retirement from Three Lions duty.
He will now make a final appearance against the USA as the Football Association (FA) honors his contribution and promotes the charitable causes he champions – although The Times has reported that the association itself will not be giving any of the estimated £3 million (US$3.9 million) in ticket sales to the foundation.
Instead, the FA will have a bucket collection at the stadium to raise funds while encouraging fans to donate through text messages and online.
The organization will also donate shirts worn by players during the game.
The news has been met with stinging rebukes online, with some fans even claiming that many people would have bought tickets under the impression that the money would be going directly to Rooney’s foundation, which focuses on helping children’s charities.
Thought it was a charity match— Neil Wilson (@NeilWilson19) November 6, 2018
This is an absolute PR nightmare from the FA!— Adam (@daddancer1905) November 6, 2018
Ah the "sweet FA".— Daz (@hobsterlobster) November 6, 2018
The FA is and continues to be an utter disgrace. The FA will not give money to Rooney fundhttps://t.co/rt50sCres9— Alex Matthews (@AJMatthews89) November 6, 2018
Rooney’s return for the fixture has divided opinion, with some believing his recall to the team cheapens the awarding of international caps, even though the forward is only expected to appear toward the end of the match.
In light of the reports that no gate money would go to Rooney’s charity, some have further questioned the point of the whole affair.
The name of the game implies tickets sales go to the charity the accompanying blurb for ticket sales reinforces that. Disgraceful that NO donation whatsoever is being made. Public deceived.— Frank Keegan (@KeeganBig) November 6, 2018
Will fans get their money back as many would have bought tickets thinking some would go to his foundation.— rushlufc (@rushlufc) November 6, 2018
So, the @FA have brought Wayne Rooney back into the England squad and officially marketed the friendly against the USA as the "Wayne Rooney Foundation International" but are not going to donate any money whatsoever to the charity itself?Yeah, that's a complete PR disaster. https://t.co/yeqdan3IyI— HLTCO (@HLTCO) November 6, 2018
So what’s the point then?— MarkColley (@MarkColley62) November 6, 2018
Couldn’t make it up...had my email encouraging me to buy a ticket to come and support Rooney & his Foundation..... they get increased revenue, appears foundation get fcuk all .... these are the people running football😡— ⚫️BigBriFFC⚪️ (@BigBriFFC) November 6, 2018
Rooney became England’s youngest ever player when he made his debut aged 17 years and 111 days against Australia in 2003.
He went on to rack up 119 caps, behind only goalkeeper Peter Shilton’s 125 on the all-time list.
Rooney’s 53 goals for the Three Lions sets him four ahead of former great Bobby Charlton at the top of the scoring charts.
The former Manchester United ace now plays his club football Stateside for DC United, where he moved from Premier League team Everton in the summer.
He was credited with helping push the Washington outfit from bottom of the table strugglers into the play-offs, although the team bowed out in a first round penalty shootout defeat to Columbus Crew.