Guernsey Press

On this day in 2022: Wayne Rooney steps down as Derby boss

Rooney has since managed DC United and Birmingham and was named Plymouth boss in May.


Wayne Rooney stepped down as manager of Derby after 18 months in charge on this day in 2022.

The former Manchester United and England striker joined the Rams in January 2020 as player-coach and ended the year in temporary charge when Phillip Cocu was sacked in November 2020.

Rooney announced his retirement from playing in January 2021 to become Derby’s full-time boss and navigated his way through a challenging first managerial post.

Derby went into administration at the start of the 21-22 season and were relegated from the Sky Bet Championship despite the then 36-year-old leading a spirited fight against the drop after having 21 points deducted throughout the season.

Rooney and his derby players clap the fans
Derby were relegated to League One and Rooney asked to leave the club (Martin Rickett/PA)

Rooney said: “Over the course of the summer I have been closely following developments regarding the ownership of Derby County.

“Today I met with the administrators to inform them of my decision that it was time for me to leave the club. In fairness to them, they tried tremendously hard to change my decision but my mind was made up.

“My time at the club has been a rollercoaster of emotions, both highs and lows, but I have to say that I have enjoyed the challenge.

“Personally, I feel the club now needs to be led by someone with fresh energy and not affected by the events that have happened over the last 18 months.

“I will remember my time at Derby with great pride and affection and would like to thank all my staff, players and of course the fans for their incredible support.

“I will never forget you and hope to see you all again in the near future and in happier times.”

Since Rooney left Derby he went back to the USA and spent a season in charge of DC United before joining Birmingham but was sacked less than three months into the role.

In May 2024, Rooney was announced as the new manager of Sky Bet Championship side Plymouth.

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