Jose: Roo can go on
United boss hints at Chinese move for captain before transfer deadline
Jose Mourinho cannot guarantee that Wayne Rooney will end the season at Manchester United despite the manager's desire to keep hold of him.
Despite training yesterday, a hamstring injury has prevented the 31-year-old from travelling for the Europa League last-32 second leg tie at St Etienne, yet the Red Devils captain still dominated the pre-match talk.
Rooney continues to be linked with an Old Trafford exit amid reported interest from big-spending Chinese clubs.
Three weeks ago Mourinho said there was no chance his skipper would leave before the season is out, but the United boss did not make the same guarantees when asked about the forward's future ahead of the Chinese transfer window shutting next week.
"You'll have to ask him," the United boss said. "You have to ask him.
"Of course I can't guarantee (he will be here). I can't guarantee that I'm here next week, how can I guarantee that a player is here next season?
"What I can guarantee is that if Wayne one day leaves the club it is not because I want him to leave the club. That's the only thing I can guarantee.
"I would never push - or try to push - a legend of this club to another destiny.
"So you have to ask him if he sees himself staying in the club for the rest of his career or if he sees himself moving. It is not a question for me because I am happy to have him."
Pushed on whether it was possible Rooney could leave in the next week, Mourinho retorted: "You have to ask him, not me. I don't want him to leave."