Last week Wayne Rooney completed his return to Everton, the boyhood club from where he announced himself to the footballing world. His decision to leave Manchester United at the end of this season was an apt demonstration of the saying that one should leave when the ovation is loudest.
Last season the Liverpool-born striker found game-time hard to come by : and he took his new substitute’s role in strides – but time was once when Rooney was one of the first names in the club’s starting eleven.
There are many career choices that players come to rue at the end of their active period; but Rooney’s decision to join United from Everton in 2004-05 season is one that he would look back at as a well-informed choice that marked the turning point of his football career .
Right from his youthful days at Everton, Rooney was a prolific scorer and he took his goal scoring prowess to Old Trafford where he was able to best the the record of Bobby Charlton. He won all the domestic trophies and all the European trophies, save the European Super Cup.
And his record two hundred and fifty three goals played a great role in United’s trophy haul of that period.In a similar vein, the fifty nine goals in one hundred and nineteen appearances he had for the Three Lions are also indicative of how prolific he was in international football.
He also could perhaps have continued his stay at United after the manner of Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs, who made only substitute appearances in the twilight period of their careers. Rooney left United carrying his head high : knowing that he had run a good race,fought a good fight and had come out triumphant .
Rooney’s return to Everton is a very shrewd signing in many ways.
- Rooney will score significant number of goals for Everton,as long as he is fit to play.
- The experience he has garnered at United and the national team will serve The Toffees well in their domestic campaigns in the coming seasons.
- Rooney pitch generalship in all the positions in the final third would make him a quality option in any position in the attacking line.
- Rooney would be a positive influence in both the dressing room and in the pitch.
- He would be a source of encouragement to the young players trying to break into the first team.
Wayne Rooney’s return to Everton gives the football world an opportunity to watch how one of England’s greatest footballers rounds off his career in an environment markedly different from the one that brought him enormous success for over a decade.