But former United boss Atkinson declared to the Sunday Mirror: "A lot is being said about Rooney, but I think he'll still be at the club for at least another two or three years. I look on him as maybe the best talent we've had since Alan Shearer, a striker who can operate to the highest standard at club and international level.
"He is a match-winner, a player who is capable of making a difference, and whatever people are saying about United, they do still have match-winners.
"You can't criticise a team that are winning the league by miles. Maybe they are not as special as some of their earlier teams and it could have been more of a contest if City had played regularly as they did in the derby and the FA Cup semi-final.
"But over the season United have been the best in the League. United win. And they do it more than anyone."
Best since Shearer? Do you agree? Give us your shout below...