Former Man Utd prodigy Ravel Morrison was a country mile better than Pogba – Rooney

The Englishman began a promising career at Old Trafford but has failed to live up to his potential in the years since

Wayne Rooney believes former Manchester United midfielder Ravel Morrison was a “country mile” better than the likes of Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard. 

Morrison was signed by the Red Devils in 2009 and made his first-team debut one year later at the age of 17. 

Unable to secure regular football, Morrison moved to West Ham in 2012 before joining Serie A side Lazio three years later. 

The former England youth international struggled to cement himself at either club however, frequently sent out on loan and even ended up playing for Swedish side Ostersunds in 2019. 

Currently contracted to Premier League side Sheffield United but on loan at Middlesbrough, Morrison, now 27, has struggled to live up to his early hype with Rooney suggesting he had skills that could have made him a superstar. 

“I remember watching Ravel Morrison thinking he had everything required for a player in his position,” Rooney wrote in his Sunday Times column

“He nutmegged Nemanja Vidic three times in the space of a minute in one training game. 

“But he struggled with lifestyle and his environment which was sad for him — because I saw Paul Pogba come through, Jesse Lingard, all these players and Ravel was better than any of them by a country mile.

“He’s proof that you can’t escape the fact there are guidelines every player has to obey in professional football. 

“Then you think how far you can go by being ultra-professional. Gary Neville, for instance. Gary’s not a great football player but he worked in every minute of every training session and made the most of everything he had. 

“Sir Alex Ferguson used to say the hardest thing in life is to work hard every day. Forget all your ability, strip everything back: if you can work hard every day, in whatever job you do you’ll be successful.” 

Former Hammers manager Sam Allardyce has backed up Rooney’s claim by previously slamming Morrison for wasting his significant talent while at Upton Park.  

“He was that good but because of the mental side of his game and his life he couldn’t produce that talent on a regular basis,” Allardyce said Sky Sports in 2017. 

“He was the biggest waste of talent I ever worked with.”