Wayne Rooney breaks Sir Bobby Charlton's Man United scoring record
Wayne Rooney broke Sir Bobby Charlton's all-time goal-scoring record for Manchester United on Saturday with his 250th strike for the club in a 1-1 draw at Stoke City.
The striker produced a superb free kick four minutes into stoppage time to save United from defeat and extend their unbeaten run to 13 games.
Rooney, 31, had to wait two weeks to break the record after levelling it with his 249th goal in the FA Cup third-round game against Reading. His late strike at the bet365 Stadium on Saturday moved him ahead of England and United legend Charlton.
"Obviously it is a proud moment," Rooney said. "It is a bit of a strange feeling as obviously we wanted three points but didn't get it. But on the other end it is a proud moment for myself to get that record and a huge honour for me.
"I've been at the club a long time. Obviously those goals have built up over the years but to finally get that record it is a great feeling."
Of Rooney's 250 goals for United, it was only the sixth he scored directly from a free kick.
"We looked at set-pieces before the game and we knew it could be important today," Rooney said. "When we got it, I actually indicated to [Ander] Herrera that I was going to shoot, to make sure the players try and get across the keeper to try and put him off. As soon as I hit it, I knew it was in."
The goal also saw Rooney break Alan Shearer's record for the most scored away from home in Premier League history, moving him onto 88.
Charlton's goals came from 758 appearances between 1956 and 1973. Rooney's have come from 546 appearances after he joined the club from Everton in 2004.
"The record is the record," United manager Jose Mourinho told Sky Sports. "It is the record of the biggest club in England and one of the biggest in the world.
"Before him, the record belonged to a legend of English football. Now Wayne becomes a legend of Manchester United."
Rooney added that he still has a lot more to offer, telling Sky the record "means a hell of a lot."
"It's something I never expected when I joined the club but I'm delighted and very proud. It's been great, very successful, and there's a lot more to come."
Rooney also overtook Charlton to become England's all-time top scorer after netting his 50th goal for the Three Lions with an 84th-minute penalty in a 2-0 Euro 2016 qualifying win against Switzerland in September 2015.
His international tally now stands on 53 from 119 caps, and he is closing on Peter Shilton's record of 125 appearances for his country.
The 79-year-old Charlton said he was naturally a little disappointed to see the record set in 1973 broken but also "delighted for Wayne."
"He deserves his place in the history books," Charlton said. "He is a true great for club and country, and it is fitting that he is now the highest goalscorer for both United and England.
"It has been great to watch him every week since his arrival at Old Trafford in 2004; he set the tone with a wonderful hat-trick on his debut and he has thrilled us all in the years since, going on to enjoy a hugely successful career.
"I was 35 when I retired. Wayne is only 31 and still going strong, so I don't think he's done by a long stretch yet.
"He continues to show that he can contribute goals, assists and performances whenever called upon, he will raise the bar even further before he calls it a day. Now he's the man to beat, and I can't see anybody doing that for a long, long time."
A five-time Premier League champion, Rooney has also won the Champions League, FIFA Club World Cup, FA Cup and two League Cups. Much of that success came under former manager Sir Alex Ferguson, who also quick to praise United's record-breaker.
"I would like to say huge congratulations to Wayne on reaching this milestone," Ferguson said. "It is no mean feat to score so many goals and he breaks a record that has stood for over 40 years.
"Wayne thoroughly deserves his place in the history books of this great club and I am sure that he will go on to score many more goals.
"Well done Wayne, I am absolutely delighted for you, you have been a great servant to this club and long may it continue."
Rooney's 250-goal notes
- By body part: Right foot, 193; left foot, 27; head, 30
- By venue: 136 home, 106 away, 8 neutral
- By shot location: 213 inside the box (26 penalties), 37 outside the box
- By competition: Premier League 180, Champions League 34 (four in qualifying), FA Cup 22, League Cup 5, UEFA Cup/Europa League 5, Club World Cup 3, Community Shield 1
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