Everton boss Koeman talks up Rooney links

Manchester United captain's future at Old Trafford is uncertain

Wayne Rooney

Image: Martin Rickett PA Wire/PA Images

Everton manager Ronald Koeman says he would welcome Wayne Rooney back to the club.

The Manchester United club captain is no longer a regularly starter at Old Trafford this season after more than 12 years at the club.

The 31 year old began his career at Goodison Park, before signing for United after Euro 2004 for a fee of about €30 million.

Koeman told Sky Sports News, he is not ruling out a move for Rooney.

"What will happen at the end of the season? I don’t know but in my opinion he is one of the players who can make Everton more stronger," said the former Southampton manager.

"It’s all about what the player likes, what Manchester United needs to do, and we are not involved in that project. But every player that we at Everton think can make the team stronger is welcome to Everton."

Rooney has made 28 appearances in all competitions for Manchester United this season but has become increasingly bit-part under Jose Mourinho.

The last time he featured for all 90 minutes in a Premier League match came back in September against Watford when United lost 3-1.

He was an unused substitute in the club's EFL Cup final win over Southampton as fellow veteran forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic continued his own influential form with a double to give United a narrow win.

Recently, Rooney's former Everton team-mate Kevin Kilbane of Newstalk's Off The Ball, spoke of the immediate impact the player made as he first came through at Goodison Park.

"It was just maybe unfortunate for us at the time that he only spent a year there, because he went to the Euros in 2004 at the end of that season and we all know what happened after he had such a good tournament," said Kevin.

"Even as a teenager, one of the outstanding things about Rooney was the physical side to his game. It was almost as if you were beside a 28 or 29-year-old man, someone who was fully developed, someone who'd had 10 years in the game, understood the game and knew the game in every aspect."