London - Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed that he refused to allow Wayne Rooney to be paid more than him during a contract stand-off with the striker in 2010.
Rooney vowed to leave United after accusing the club of a lack of ambition, only to perform a sudden U-turn and sign a new five-year deal reportedly worth £180,000-a-week.
But that was less than United initially offered him, with Ferguson revealing in his new book, 'Leading', which is released on Tuesday, that he told United's owners the Glazer family and then-chief executive David Gill he "did not think it fair that Rooney should earn twice what I made".
"It was simple. We just agreed that no player should be paid more than me," Ferguson said.
Rooney fell out with Ferguson prior to the Scot's retirement in 2013, but was appointed United captain by current manager Louis van Gaal last year.
Ferguson says that Everton pulled out all the stops to prevent Rooney joining United in 2004, including an emotional phone-call from the player's mother.
"After we gave them our final offer, (Everton manager Bill) Kenwright got Rooney's mother on the phone and she told me, 'you are not going to steal my boy'," writes Ferguson, who is now a United director.