Rio Ferdinand revealed he warned Wayne Rooney over taking the Birmingham manager’s job (Picture: Vibe with Five)
The 38-year-old, who was sacked on Tuesday, oversaw just two wins in 15 games following his controversial appointment at St Andrew’s in October.
Rooney wasbrought in at the expense of popular former boss John Eustace by the club’s new ownership group. A takeover by a company owned by American businessman Tom Wagner was completed last summer.
Supporters called for Rooney’s removal as the side slumped to a 3-0 defeat at Leeds on New Year’s Day. The result left the club 20th in the table having been sixth when Rooney took charge.
Rooney, however, has said he does not feel he was given long enough and it would take a while to recover from the decision.
The 38-year-old, who has previously managed at Derby and DC United, released a statement which read: ‘Football is a results business – and I recognise they have not been at the level I wanted them to be.
‘However, time is the most precious commodity a manager requires and I do not believe 13 weeks was sufficient to oversee the changes that were needed.
Wayne Rooney won just two of his 15 games at the Birmingham helm (Picture: Getty)
‘Personally, it will take me some time to get over this setback. I have been involved in professional football, as either a player or manager, since I was 16.
‘Now, I plan to take some time with my family as I prepare for the next opportunity in my journey as a manager.’
Ferdinand, meanwhile, reacted to the news of Rooney’s demise by revealing he told his old club and international colleague that the Birmingham job was always likely to be something of a poisoned chalice.
Birmingham were in sixth place when Wayne Rooney took over as manager (Picture: Getty)
He told Vibe with Five: ‘The stress levels are very different. These guys want to get a career in the game and it’s difficult. One of the key words he used was time. Managers aren’t afforded 13 weeks that Wayne feels isn’t really long enough to put his stamp on a team.
‘We all know, Wayne’s not silly. It’s results driven and when you look on the facts it’s two wins in 15 games, they were sixth and now they’re 20th and a win percentage of just 13% and that’s damming.
‘I think with the conversations he had behind the scenes and when he went in there, a couple of weeks a go the conversations he had he would’ve felt positive that regardless of results as long as he stays up he’ll get time.
‘That hasn’t been the way it is and I’ve seen clips of Birmingham fans at games disgruntled, not happy.
‘I always thought at the beginning and I spoke to Wayne when he got the job on the phone, I spoke to him at the time, it’s a difficult time to go into a club when the tails are up and they’re doing well, when they like the manager.
‘The fans had a good rapport with the manager it seemed. That players seemed to like the manager and were playing for him. Nine times out of 10 a manager replaces someone who isn’t doing well. This was a different scenario and his back was against the wall from the start.’
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The Manchester United legend lasted just 15 games at St Andrew’s.