Former England footballer Wayne Rooney has landed himself in hot water. The current MLS player was arrested on the charges of public intoxication and swearing. The incident reportedly took place in the US just before Christmas. The footballer’s defence was that sleeping pills were to blame. The former England and Manchester United captain, who now plays for US team DC United, was charged on 16 December.
According to court records, the former Manchester United star was arrested by police at Dulles International Airport. The airport is situated in the northern Virginia suburbs of Washington.
Rooney was returning from a promotional trip to Saudi Arabia at the time and was charged with misdemeanour, public intoxication and swearing in Loudon County, Virginia. He was released on his own recognizance before paying a $25 fine and court costs on Friday.
“During the flight Wayne took a prescribed amount of sleeping tablets mixed with some alcohol consumption and consequently was disorientated on arrival,” his spokesman said.
“He was approached by police who arrested him on a minor misdemeanour charge.
“He received a statutory automatic fine and was released shortly afterwards at the airport. The matter is now at an end.
“Wayne would like to put on record his appreciation for the manner he was treated by all involved.”
DC United are aware of the reports of Rooney’s arrest in a statement issued to US media.
“We understand the media’s interest in this matter but believe this is a private matter for Wayne that DC United will handle internally,” the club said.
Rooney is serving a two-year UK drink driving ban stemming from a September 2017 arrest in England.
The 33-year-old forward came to the US capital last July, signing with DC United and taking the last-place Major League Soccer club into the playoffs in his first half-season with the squad.
Rooney was at the forefront of United’s marketing campaign as the team opened a new stadium. The English star admitted that he looked forward to the challenge and enjoyed the relative anonymity afforded by suburban life in America.
His contract, which according to the MLS Payers Association pays him a salary of some $2.8 million plus revenue from bonuses and sponsorship, runs through the 2020 season.
DC United open the 2019 MLS season on March 3 against Atlanta United.