New Birmingham manager Wayne Rooney was reportedly told to ‘f*** off back to America’ after his side lost 2-0 at home to Hull on Wednesday night.
After leaving MLS outfit DC United earlier this month to return to English football, Rooney watched his Birmingham side lose 1-0 at Middlesbrough on Saturday, and things did not get any better when he took charge of his first game at St Andrew’s.
Goals in either half from Liam Delap and Jaden Philogene ensured Hull, managed by Rooney’s former assistant Leroy Rosenior, ended their four-game winless streak, while Birmingham slipped to their second straight defeat under Rooney.
The team were booed off at the final whistle, while one fan shouted at Rooney to ‘f*** off back to America’ as he left the stadium, according to ESPN reporter Mark Ogden.
Rooney replaced John Eustace at Birmingham despite the side sitting in sixth place over the international break.
Wayne Rooney’s Birmingham were beaten again by Hull City on Wednesday night
Fans booed the team off at full-time, with one supporter reportedly telling Rooney to ‘f*** off back to America’
Rooney has now lost his first two games in charge of Birmingham since returning to English football
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Following their two losses with Rooney at the helm, the Blues have now dropped to 12th.
Appointing the former Manchester United star appeared a risk given his modest record during his time in America.
He managed DC United for 53 matches, winning just 14 of those and losing 26 times.
This followed on from him failing to keep Derby in the Championship, although his hands were somewhat tied in that situation as the club dealt with significant financial difficulties during his tenure.
Upon Rooney’s arrival at Birmingham, he announced his intention to lead the club back to the Premier League, and he is set to be backed heavily by the club’s board which includes NFL legend Tom Brady.
However, it has been a difficult start for Rooney, and some fans seem to have already turned against him based on the reaction to Wednesday night’s defeat.
Speaking after the game, Rooney admitted he will have to adapt his ‘no-fear football’ philosophy at Birmingham because his players cannot carry it out on the pitch.
Jaden Philogene scored Hull’s second goal to wrap up a routine win for the visitors
John Eustace (pictured) led Birmingham to sixth place before he was sacked, but they have now dropped to 12th under Rooney
‘You need to be brave in taking the ball, but it’s clear from the first two games that the players aren’t comfortable doing that,’ said Rooney.
‘So there will be slight adjustments of course because we need to pick up points as well.
‘I can get players up the pitch, boot the ball up the pitch and look to pick up second balls, but we need to get the balance right.
‘This is on me – maybe I’ve asked them to do too much and I take that responsibility. We’re asking them to play out from the back and be more front-footed.
‘I said to the lads after the game ‘if you don’t feel you can do it, tell me, and we can adjust and adapt’.
‘There’s so many different elements to no-fear football. They’ve had snots and guts for the last 10 years and it’s been very difficult.
‘But it’s not going to change within two weeks when the players haven’t been used to a completely different way.
Rooney admitted afterwards that he will need to adapt his tactics after the humbling defeat
‘As I’m getting to know players’ strengths and weaknesses, we will find that balance to ensure we get it right.’
Rooney stated that he had no issue with the fans booing at half-time and full-time, acknowledging that his team need to start getting positive results to get their supporters back on-side.
‘That’s part of football. You need to win games to change that,’ said Rooney.
Rooney will hope to get his first win at the third time of asking when Birmingham travel to Southampton on Saturday.
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