Wayne Rooney's match worn Nike Hypervenom Phantom iii
Player name: Wayne Mark Rooney
Clubs: Everton, Manchester United, DC United
Position: Striker, Attacking midfielder
Height: 5 ft 9 in
Rooney is the record goalscorer for the England national team and for Manchester United. At club level, he has won every honour available in English, European, and Continental football, with the exception of the UEFA Super Cup.Rooney and Michael Carrick are the only English players to win the Premier League, FA Cup, UEFA Champions League, League Cup, UEFA Europa League, and FIFA Club World Cup. Rooney joined the Everton youth team at the age of 9 and made his professional debut for the club in 2002 at the age of 16. Rooney transferred to Manchester United for £25.6 million in the 2004 summer transfer window. He won 16 trophies with the club, including five Premier League titles, the FA Cup and the Champions League in 2008. He scored 253 goals for United in all competitions to make him their top goalscorer of all time, with 183 Premier League goals being the most scored by a player for any single club. Rooney's 208 Premier League goals make him the Premier League's second top scorer of all time behind only Alan Shearer. He also has the third-highest number of assists in the Premier League, with 103.
Here we have 2 extraordinary pairs of Wayne's match worn Nike Hypervenom Phantom iii boots, which he wore during his second spell at Everton in the Premier League and at the start of his chapter at DC United in the MLS. Both pairs feature some interesting modifications, making them incomparable to the retail versions of these models sold by Nike on the commercial market.
Both pairs feature personalisation of his initials and squad number, "WR10". Where most players opt for having family names, DOB's etc, Wayne throughout his career has always opted for the simple personalisation of adding his initials and squad number.
Rooney is a creative, energetic forward who combines technical skill with strength and physicality, while also excelling in the air despite being 5 ft 9 tall. He is a versatile attacker, capable of playing anywhere along the front line; although his preferred role is as a striker. Rooney has also been used as a supporting forward, or even as a winger. As his pace and movement declined as he entered his thirties, he has been deployed in deeper, more creative roles, as an attacking midfielder, as a deep-lying playmaker, or even as a central or box-to-box midfielder, in particular under former manager Louis van Gaal, due to his vision, range of passing, runs forward from midfield, and team-work.
One of the most noticeable modifications on these 2 pairs is the additional lines of stitching in the heel areas of each boot. These lines are on both sides of each boot with the main purpose of adding some structure and stability. The heels are highly reinforced and have no flex whatsoever, unlike retail models, so this stitching only adds to this.
Interestingly, the insoles have been glued into the boots so they are non-removable, this is highly uncommon with players' boots as they tend to like to wear 1 pair of insoles in multiple pairs of boots which will of course not only add comfort but also help with blistering and break in time... Rooney has his own trend! With Wayne being one of Nike's top athletes, they of course hand make his boots in their famous Athlete Services factory in Montebelluna, Italy. The logo is still slightly visible on the left insole (as above).
Pulling back the insoles as far as they'll go, the carbon fibre inner strengthening can be seen. This usually runs from the heel area through to the forefoot area and is a more regular addition among Nike players' boots. As mentioned above the innersoles of these pairs are glued in, so this is the only visible part of the carbon fibre.
In 2017, Gareth Southgate said: "You've got very good players and then there are top players. In my time in the England setup, Paul Gascoigne, Paul Scholes and Rooney just had that little bit more than all the others. And we are talking high‑level people there, players like Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and David Beckham."
The blue pair feature a modified soleplate, with Wayne opting for the more traditional 6-stud layout on his SG boots. Many people seem to over look how good this soleplate is, lots of top pros still wear this plate. The simplicity of its design is out dated, however performs better than most of the hybrid mixed stud soleplates on the commercial market today - old but gold! Rooney has also noticeably chosen to use aluminium tipped plastic studs instead of the usual aluminium studs you find on Nike boots.
The inside of each boot has been lined with a thick black padded material. This is thicker in the shooting areas and provides additional comfort and thickness to the upper - the upper of the HV iii was known to be quite thin. Another modification is underneath the lacing system, Nike's Montebelluna craftsmen have added a layer of padding to prevent lace bite.
Due to his precocious displays as a teenager, Wayne Rooney was given the nicknames "Wazza" (a reference to former England international Paul "Gazza" Gascoigne, "The Wonder Boy", "the new Pelé," and "the white Pelé." Rooney was a fast, agile player in his youth, who developed into a prolific goalscorer. Despite his reputation as one of the best players of his generation, and as one of England's greatest ever players and all-time leading goalscorer, Rooney has been criticised for his behaviour and aggression on the pitch at times, which has led him to pick up unnecessary bookings and suspensions.
The additional line of stitching around the lacing system attaches the inner padding to the upper itself.
The red pair are heavily worn by Wayne with a lot of visible wear and tear, especially to the upper. Around the edge of the toe box the top layer of the Nike Skin has begun to peel away which is an indication of just how much he wore this pair.
Throughout his career, Wayne has been known to usually opt for SG metal stud soleplates, however whilst he was playing in the MLS he switched his approach and almost 100% of the time wore FG boots. Likely to be due to the dry, short grass pitches in the states as opposed to the pitches you find in the English Premier League.
During his time at DC United, Wayne scored a total of 23 goals and made 13 assists in 50 appearances. Not bad for a player who was 33 years old at the time and coming to the end of his career.
Not all of his goals at DC United were typical striker "goal poacher" type goals either, he famously scored a goal from inside his own half against Orlando CIty.
With his boots being made to measure to his exact specifications, each pair have been made extremely wide to compensate for his foot shape. Hypervenoms generally are one of the more narrow boots available on the market in terms of retail pairs. Due to their bespoke nature, they feature no size labels as they are not an exact size, however they are measured to be around a UK size 9.5.
Throughout Rooney's club career he has made a total (and counting) of 744 appearances, scoring 310 goals and making 166 assists. He remains England's all time goal scorer with 53 goals, in 120 international caps.