After Wayne Rooney dismissed all possibilities of a move to the Far East before Tuesday’s deadline, speculations of his returning to boyhood club have sprung up yet again. The England international’s agent Paul Stretford had reportedly travelled to China over the past week as a move to the Chinese Super League appeared possible, before the Manchester United star denied it all.
The Merseyside club hasn’t shied away from expressing their desire in landing their former youth product and has already seen a winter bid rejected to that end. And as per reports, a return is a serious possibility. The 31-year-old has been nearing the end of his United career with first team chances a rarity now. Most importantly, the team is doing just fine without his services and it is only a matter of time before he is seen as a liability by the management.
Retirement is a difficult decision to take and we don’t expect the once-prolific striker to just fade away after a disappointing season. Rooney had left for Manchester United in 2004 for £25m, an offer which was too big a deal for Everton to turn down and the striker has never looked back since then. He has since then scored 250 goals in 549 matches registering 145 assists.
He has won it all with United- Premier league, Champions League, Europa League, FA Cup and Club World Cup. And this lack of challenge could be a big reason for his underwhelming displays, which could eventually end with his departure.
Even in Everton, he will surely not expect a guaranteed first team place given the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Kevin Mirallas and Omar Niasse, are all competing for that forward’s position. The stocky forward, whose stamina and strength was unparalleled in the league, has seen injuries creeping in and his instincts losing its sharpness. He has managed to score just two goals in 17 appearances so far this season.
There is no doubt that the centre-forward has his heart set at Old Trafford and he has even tried compromising his favoured position to fit into the team as and when needed. However, if he has aspirations to play in the 2018 World Cup, staying with United doesn’t sound like a wise decision.
Everton have progressed over the years from a mid-table club to a top half contender and are willing to welcome him as it would be a serious level up for the team.