Wayne Rooney has revealed his son Kai has been copying his goal celebration in front of his classmates at school.Not for the first time in his career, Rooney found himself the subject of a number of unwanted headlines last month after a video was published which apparently showed him being knocked out in a playful fight with former Manchester United team-mate Phil Bardsley.
Rooney poked fun at the furore caused by the video when he followed his goal up against Tottenham with a shadow boxing celebration that ended with him falling to the deck.
The celebration was a big hit on social media and it was quickly included in lists of all-time top football celebrations along with the likes of Paul Gascoigne’s ‘dentist chair’ effort at Euro 96 and Peter Crouch’s robot dance.
And it seems the celebration was a knockout with Rooney’s five-year-old son too.
“It’s funny, actually. My wife went to pick up my lad from school and saw him doing that in the classroom,” the England captain said with a chuckle.
Some were unhappy at the fact that Rooney was involved in quite a fierce sparring session in his kitchen, and the fact that he fell on to a hard floor close to a fairly sharp table leg.
But he played the incident down and insisted he was not knocked out.
“For me, it wasn’t a big issue,” he said.
“For (United manager Louis van Gaal) it wasn’t a big issue.
“If I’d felt it was that wrong, I’d have apologised to the right people. But for me, that’s been and gone and I’m now concentrating on my football.
“I was in a house with some friends. Obviously I was caught on the wrong end of a punch, but I wasn’t knocked out like it was reported.”
That said, he will not repeat the celebration.
“I’m sure you won’t be seeing that again,” he added with a smile.
Despite being the captain, Rooney has not escaped punishment from his England team-mates on the matter this week.
They have been teasing the striker about the episode right from the moment they met up at St George’s Park on Monday.
“There has been (stick) around the place, at United and England training,” he said.
“But you’d expect that. They’re a group of lads. I’ve always loved boxing. Unfortunately, sometimes, it didn’t go too well for you.”
Rooney looked tense when he first addressed the issue after the 3-0 win over Tottenham, but as he spoke to the media on the eve of England’s Euro 2016 qualifier against Lithuania, he was in a much better mood.
That bodes well for England and for Rooney as he has a big target in his crosshairs.
If Rooney scores three more times over the next five days, he will equal Sir Bobby Charlton’s all-time scoring record.