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Wayne Rooney to Everton: Ex-Man Utd star says trophy with Toffees would be career high

 

The striker, 31, ended a 13-year career with Manchester United that saw him claim five league titles, the FA Cup, three League Cups, plus winner’s medals in the Champions and Europa Leagues.

But as Rooney looked ahead to making a second debut for the Toffees next month – 15 years after his first – he admitted that success with his boyhood club would eclipse his previous honours.

“Winning trophies with Everton would be the pinnacle,” said Rooney. “I really feel now the club is moving in the right direction, bringing the right calibre of players in. I want to be part of it and hopefully part of a successful Everton team.

“It’s a great feeling to be back. I’m ecstatic – I just cannot wait to get back playing. I’m excited and I’m excited by the signings that the club have made. This club should be winning trophies and we’re taking huge steps to being involved and trying to win trophies.”

Rooney’s advisers had been locked in negotiations with Everton since the end of the season when it became apparent Jose Mourinho had no desire to keep his club captain at Old Trafford.

With two years remaining on his £250,000-a-week contract with United, Rooney’s salary remained the major stumbling block to his return to Goodison, with the player unwilling to take a drastic pay cut.

It is understood, however, that Rooney has agreed to a reduction of about 50 per cent in his salary at Goodison, while United have agreed to pay the balance in a “golden handshake” payment to their former star.

And Rooney, who first played for Everton three months short of his 17th birthday, said: “As I’ve said for the last few years, if I left Manchester United, there’s only Everton I’d play for. I wouldn’t play for another Premier League team.

“Once I knew Everton were interested and wanted to sign me, I made my agent aware, ‘Go and speak to them, let’s make it happen. That’s where I want to go’.

“I’m not just coming back because it’s the team I support, the team I grew up playing for – I’m coming back because I feel the club can move forward and be successful.

“There will be pressure on me to perform but I’m ready to go. I believe I can help move this club forward and be more successful on the pitch.

“With the new stadium in the pipeline, it’s an exciting time to be an Everton player, to be an Everton fan. It’s on us players to make those times even more exciting by giving them good performances and try to help them be successful and bring trophies.”

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Source: Express

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