Captain Wayne Rooney helped Derby County win Barnsley 2-1 in the 26th round of the First Division of England, on 2 January.

In the Derby debut, Rooney was coached by Philip Cocu as a central midfielder. The 34-year-old contributed his shoes in both home goals. 45 minutes, he crosses the ball from the left wing to Jack Marriott to open the score.

After Derby let Barnsley equalize in the second half, Rooney initiated the second goal for the hosts, opening the ball long for Andre Wisdom to create for Martyn Waghorn to seal a 2-1 victory.

Initially, Cocu appointed Rooney to debut from the bench. But Derby’s poor performance, with just one win in the last eight games, made the Dutch coach change his mind. Rooney came out from the start and had a chance to score in the second half, but the former header from the former Man Utd player sent the ball out.

A 2-1 victory didn’t help Derby improve 17th place, but the distance between them and the red-light group widened to 10 points.

In August 2019, Derby announced an 18-month contract with Rooney. The former England international had a two-year contract with the American club DC United, but has been excited to return to England as a player and deputy coach since January.

Rooney’s arrival is expected to help Derby return to the play-off race – something they did under coach Frank Lampard last season. Currently, Derby is eight points behind Swansea’s sixth place after 26 rounds.

Rooney grew up at Everton’s academy, before being recruited in 2004 by Man Utd for a record fee for a teenage player back then. With “Reds,” he won five Premier League titles, one Champions League title, one FA Cup and three League Cups. Rooney is the best striker in Man Utd history with 253 goals after 13 years of sticking. He also became the top scorer for England, with 53 goals in 120 matches.

Rooney left Man Utd in July 2017 to return to Everton. A year later, he went to the United States to play and scored 23 goals in 41 matches at DC United.