Gary Neville has questioned the sense in Manchester United allowing Wayne Rooney to move to China now when the club are left fighting on four fronts this season.
Rooney’s agent Paul Stretford is in China for talks with four Chinese Super League clubs who could more than double the player’s £300,000 a week deal at Old Trafford.
However, with United fighting for success in three cup competitions and still chasing a top-four finish in the Premier League, Jose Mourinho has bemoaned a fixtures schedule that threatens to derail their season.
And Neville believes United would be foolish to allow Rooney to leave now given the circumstances.
“I’d like to think Wayne Rooney would stay at Manchester United,” he told Sky Sports News HQ.
“It’s strange timing – the [English] transfer window over and yet this debate when there’s still two months of the season to go. That seems odd. There’s still a contribution to be make and many trophies to be played for and won at United.
“I haven’t got a clue [if he’ll move before Tuesday’s China deadline]. I’ve known Wayne for a long time but I haven’t spoken to him.
“I’m waiting to see what happens but the timing seems odd when United need their squad. Morgan Schneiderlin and Memphis Depay left in January, which means the squad – if they got two or three injuries – would be depleted.
“The fact they’re still in the Europa League, playing very important games in the league and the FA Cup, plus obviously a cup final, I’d imagine Jose would want his squad in place.
“I can also see the other side of it that if Wayne’s unhappy and doesn’t want to sit on the bench, maybe there would be a move. End of the season, I could maybe see something but why now? I’m not sure.”