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Rooney set for move to Championship?

John Rooney may be on the verge of climbing a few rungs up the Football League ladder.

John Rooney may be on the verge of climbing a few rungs up the Football League ladder.

The younger brother of Manchester United and England star Wayne has this week been training at Championship club Derby County.

Although the 19-year-old has returned to the Moss Rose for this weekend's game against league leaders Rochdale, he is expected to feature in a reserve team game for the Rams against Sheffield Wednesday next week.

He was to be handed a chance to impress Nigel Clough and his backroom staff last week but the midweek reserve team game against Sheffield United fell foul of the weather.

"Macclesfield are preparing for their game on Saturday and I would have thought John would be in the squad for that," admitted Clough. "We'll see if we can get him back for the reserve game next Wednesday.

"We have to see him in a game now but he has looked OK in training.

"He is more slight and not got the build of Wayne, he is going to be a little later developing physically but we can see he has got something. He is only 19, so we will have to assess if he is going to be knocking on the door next season if we take him."

After five years at Everton's youth system, Rooney was released in 2007, when Silkmen scout Brian Hart, a former scout at Goodsion, recommended him to centre of excellence manager Mick Holgate and youth team coach John Askey.

Rooney was snapped up by the coaches at Macclesfield's highly regarded academy and made his first-team debut in a goalless draw at Chester City on the final day of the 2007/08 season.

Often mercurial, he has started just nine league games this season for the Silkmen, netting once in league matches and once in a JPT game, but has shown flashes of the skills that clearly run in the family.

Macc boss Keith Alexander said: "He is a player who deserves to play at a higher level but whether he will move on in the summer is a different matter," said Alexander.

"Some stay and some go when there is interest in them. He is a very, very good footballer and if he does move elsewhere in the summer, then we will just have to make do without him."

Asked if having such a famous brother could have an adverse effect on Rooney, Clough said: "It is not going to be easy for him. His brother is so special that John is always going to be in his shadow in anything he accomplishes.

"But John is young, he is just trying to make his own way whether it be in League Two or whatever, and he wants to be a professional footballer."

 

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