As a player Wayne Rooney was used to the boos and taunts from opposition supporters, but he always answered them in the best way he knew how.
However, in his first game as interim coach for Derby County, he clearly wasn’t expecting what transpired before the match.
As has become customary now, once the referee blows his whistle, both sides will take a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
On the first weekend that supporters were allowed back into stadiums in England, Millwall fans took it upon themselves to boo both sets of players when they knelt, and that clearly didn’t chime with Rooney or the rest of the football going public.
Section of crowd at Millwall vs Derby game start booing as players take a knee in support of Black Lives Matter movement
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) December 5, 2020
“I was very surprised if I’m being honest,” Rooney said to talkSPORT after the game.
“Everyone at Derby Country has been in full support of taking the knee, so it was quite surprising and I’m sure for our players it could have been difficult to hear that.
“But they reacted well, they put it to the back of their minds and they got on with the game, so credit to them for that. But I don’t think that is condoned in football.”
The former England international inspired his side to only their second win in 16 Championship games this season, which finally took them off of the bottom of the table.
He’ll surely be hoping for more of the same over the coming weeks, and may even end up with the post full-time if he can prove his worth in the role.