New Manchester United manager David Moyes has stated Wayne Rooney is not for sale and challenged him to match the impressive goalscoring feats of club heroes.
Rooney's Old Trafford future has been the main topic amongst United fans since the beginning of May, when Sir Alex Ferguson claimed the 27-year-old had demanded a transfer for a second time. Though Ferguson's view of events has been challenged, the feeling has persisted that Rooney is looking for a move.
"I've had several meetings with Wayne," said Moyes. "I'm fortunate, I've known him since he was 16. He is not for sale. He's a Manchester United player and will remain a Manchester United player."
In his own assessment of the situation, Moyes repeatedly fell back on the status of great Red Devils of the past, and in particular the achievements of two members of the 'Holy Trinity' who were responsible of so much of the club's great history during Sir Matt Busby's days.
"It is interesting to see Wayne is only 50 goals behind Sir Bobby Charlton and 40 behind Denis Law," said Moyes. "We are looking to see how we get Wayne Rooney to get those goals which are going to challenge the likes of Bobby Charlton and Denis Law. I am more than happy to work with him to get success."
Charlton remains United's most prolific goalscorer, with 249. Law is second on the list with 237. Rooney ended last season with 197, behind only Jack Rowley in addition to the pair Moyes wants the Croxteth-born player to catch.
"When I went down to the training ground, I looked at the pictures of the legends that have played for this club," said Moyes. "I could see George Best, Denis Law, Bobby Charlton, Roy Keane and I thought Wayne isn't too far away from that.
"It's not too difficult to get the goals and he could be near to that. If he could do that he could be seen in the same light as those people."
He may be new in his role as chief executive but Ed Woodward would not require much experience to be aware once a player gets towards his final 12 months, their value plummets.
This time next year, United could not hope to get anything like the £25million they would expect to command as a transfer fee this summer if they sold to Chelsea, Arsenal, PSG or Barcelona, who have all been linked with Rooney.