Has World Cup mania gone too far? All 15 staff members at a pub in northern England have changed their names to Wayne Rooney, in a collective display of support for the national side’s star striker.
The workers at the Bay Horse pub in East Ardsley in West Yorkshire each paid around 40 euros to complete the legal process.
“It’s very different,” said one young woman. “I’m not used to being called a bloke’s name but it’s alright.”
Most will resume their former identities after the tournament – though one male worker said in the right circumstances he would keep the Rooney name.
“Definitely, as long as I score a goal in the World Cup Final and we win, that’s my name for life,” he said.
Not to be outdone, the pub’s manager Lee Kennedy and his wife have changed their names too. Both are now called Fabio Capello after the England coach.
It makes picking a team somewhat easy. Capello the pub manager jotted down the name Rooney several times on a notepad in front of him.
However sorting out rota patterns can lead to confusion.
“Wayne, Wayne, Wayne,” said a female bar worker.
“No, Wayne called in sick,” replied one of her colleagues, before adding that Wayne had swapped his shift with Wayne.
The Bay Horse staff are not alone in changing their names in tribute to the 24-year-old England player.
Ten people at the Shakespeare Inn in Manchester have also renamed themselves Wayne Rooney.