By Will Butcher
Wayne Rooney has revealed that he wants to remain at Manchester United despite reportedly being interested in former side Everton ahead of the summer window.
Sports site Bleacher Report claimed last month that the 31-year-old found the idea of rejoining Everton this summer “hugely appealing”, after falling down the pecking order under Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford.
However, speaking in a press conference ahead of Man United’s Europa League semi-final second leg against Celta Vigo, Rooney revealed he wants to remain with his current side.
Talking to Sky Sports Rooney said: “I’ve been at this club 13 years, of course I want to play football.”
When asked ‘here?’ Rooney replied: “Of course.”
It is believed that a move back to Goodison Park for Rooney would blow Everton’s wage structure out of the water, as he currently earns far more than any Toffees player takes home.
Rooney has two years remaining on his huge £300,000-a-week deal with United, and is likely to have to take a pay cut if he was to move back to Merseyside.
This season, England captain Rooney has scored seven goals and laid on a further 10 assists during his 34 league and cup appearances for Mourinho’s side.
Football Insider verdict:
Everton should do whatever it takes to lure Rooney back to Goodison Park, 13 years after he left to join Sir Alex Ferguson’s United as a teenager. Although he has lost a yard of pace, the 119-time England international still possesses the quality that could turn Everton into a side challenging for the Champions League rather than sitting in a comfortable seventh place in the Premier League table. With Ross Barkley also beginning to show glimpses of quality that could see him shine for Koeman’s side, Rooney could be brought in to tutor Barkley into becoming like him as both players went through the same academy system at Everton.
In other Everton transfer news, this 27-year-old could reportedly rejoin his former side.