The England international was heavily linked with a move to Chelsea in the summer of 2013 after Jose Mourinho spoke of his interest in the 28-year-old striker.
He was a bit down and I told him I needed to see the old Wayne Rooney
However, Moyes managed to keep hold of Rooney, and despite a number of subdued performances, the forward signed a new five-year deal in February.
And the 52-year-old, who was sacked in April before Louis van Gaal was appointed, felt Rooney was a terrific player for him during his doomed reign.
“When I arrived at United, it was well known that Wayne wasn’t in a good place. He was a bit down and I told him I needed to see the old Wayne Rooney,” Moyes told Daily Mirror.
“I asked him to get back to being that hungry, aggressive player, who I’d seen at Everton. Sometimes, he does overstep the mark, but I always thought that it is better to have Wayne Rooney straining at the leash rather than playing within himself.
“His response was to get himself in his best physical condition and he was terrific for me at United.”
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