English footballer Rooney arrested in December in U.S. for public intoxication

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football – International Friendly – England v United States – Wembley Stadium, London, Britain – November 15, 2018 England’s Wayne Rooney during the match Action Images via Reuters/Carl Recine/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – English football star Wayne Rooney was arrested in December at Dulles Airport outside Washington, D.C. for public intoxication, according to local police.

Rooney, who has played for U.S. soccer team DC United since last year, was booked into the Loudoun County Adult Detention Center on Dec. 16, on a charge of public intoxication stemming from an arrest by the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police, the local sheriff’s office said.

Rooney, 33, was released later the same day on a personal recognizance bond, said Kraig Troxell, a spokesman for the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.

It was not immediately clear why authorities had delayed details of Rooney’s arrest for more than two weeks. Rooney’s agent could not be reached immediately for comment. DC United did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Rooney, England’s former captain and all-time top scorer, joined the Major League Soccer club in mid-2018 in a deal that was reportedly worth more than $12 million and made him the highest paid player in DC United’s history.

Liverpool-born Rooney was the latest addition to an elite list of former England captains to hop across the Atlantic, following David Beckham and Steven Gerrard.

Rooney burst into the consciousness of English soccer when he made his Premier League debut for Everton at age 16.

He joined Manchester United for $35 million in 2004 and stayed there for 13 seasons – winning five English titles, one Champions League, one FA Cup, three League Cups and becoming the club’s all-time leading scorer with 253 goals.

(This story was refiled to add the word “clear” in paragraph 4)

Reporting by Ginger Gibson; Additional reporting by Gina Cherelus in New York; Editing by Lisa Shumaker and Jeffrey Benkoe

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