- Reports indicate the decorated English striker Wayne Rooney could be leaving the Premier League and signing with D.C. United in MLS.
- Rooney is on the back half of his career, and Everton has experienced a disappointing season.
- But D.C. United, which is set to open a new stadium this summer, could use a high-profile signing.
Manchester United and the English National Team’s all-time leading goalscorer Wayne Rooney looks set to follow the trend of ageing European stars heading to Major League Soccer with a transfer to D.C. United.
Both BBC Sport and Sky Sports have reported that Rooney has “agreed to a deal in principle” to leave Everton and join D.C. over the summer, midway through the MLS season. However, Steven Goff of the Washington Post is a bit less bullish on a deal being done.
— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) May 10, 2018
But for Rooney, who is 32-years-old with a lot of miles on his legs, a move to MLS could be an opportunity to revitalize his career.
Rooney transferred back to his boyhood club this past summer from Manchester United, and while he has scored 10 goals this season, Everton has been a disappointment, having fired manager Ronald Koeman and brought in Sam Allardyce to stabilise the club.
According to a report from The Sun, which has not been confirmed, Rooney’s deal with D.C. United will pay him over $US400 thousand a week, a fee which would have to be subsidized by both Manchester United (who are still paying Rooney’s current wages) and Everton, meaning Rooney would be getting paid by three different soccer clubs. Those wages would also make Rooney the highest-paid player in MLS by a comfortable margin.
D.C. United has traditionally had one of the smaller payrolls in MLS, but as Goff notes, the club is set to move to a new stadium this summer, and is expecting the new stadium to bring in more revenue. Of course, having a player of Rooney’s marquee should also help the club attract fans to the new stadium.
However, Rooney’s signing will also likely add to the often-repeated criticism of MLS as a whole as being a retirement league, a place for over-the-hill players to correct one final big paycheck.
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