Wayne Rooney is going home.
The Premier League legend joined Everton from Manchester United on Sunday, confirming a long-rumored emotional return to his boyhood club, which he left for Old Trafford in 2004. Rooney reportedly signed a two-year contract with the Toffees, and the clubs then announced his transfer on their websites.
“It is some time since I said that the only Premier League club I would play for other than Manchester United was Everton, so I am delighted that the move has happened,” Rooney said, per Sky Sports. “Thirteen years ago I went to United with the intention of winning trophies and I have been fortunate to be a part of one of the most successful periods in the club’s history.
“I have come back to Everton because I believe Ronald Koeman is building a team that can win something and I look forward to playing my part in making that a reality for the club I have supported since a boy.”
The teams didn’t disclose Rooney’s transfer fee, but his move is believed to be part of Romelu Lukaku’s impending transfer from Everton to Manchester United. The Mail reported Thursday that Rooney agreed to a 50 percent pay cut in order to facilitate his transfer.
Rooney burst onto the scene at Everton as a 16-year-old, scoring 17 goals in 77 games in his first spell with the club. His talent convinced Manchester United to buy him for £27 million.
Rooney, 31, departs Manchester United as its all-time leading goal scorer, having bagged 253 goals in 559 games for the Red Devils. He helped them win five Premier League titles, the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League on FA Cup, three Football League Cups and one FIFA Club World Cup.
Many believe Rooney’s powers are fading. He played just 25 Premier League games last season (15 starts) and scored eight goals in all competitions. Both totals were the lowest of his 13-year Manchester United career.
He’ll look to fire the Toffees to success in the Premier League, domestic cups and UEFA Europa League next season.
Thumbnail photo via YouTube/NBC Sports