Although Wayne Rooney claimed he wants to stay at Manchester United earlier this week, that won’t stop the rampant speculation that his 13-year stay at Old Trafford could be coming to an end this summer.
In February, it was revealed that Paul Stretford – who is seen as the financial brains behind Rooney’s impressive career – was in China to meet with numerous suitors that were ready to offer his star client as much as £1 million per week.
Despite the great financial rewards awaiting him in the Chinese Super League, it’s safe to assume that the 31-year-old would prefer to play in a more competitive league as he may still have a lot to offer; hence him wanting to remain with the Red Devils and not look for a move away from the club where he has won five Premier League titles.
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However, according to a report from the Daily Mail, Rooney could still find himself facing the exit door this summer with United boss Jose Mourinho looking to use him as a makeweight for his supposed top transfer target.
Plenty of big names have been linked with a move to Old Trafford, with the likes of Antoine Griezmann, James Rodriguez and even Gareth Bale linked with arrivals.
The source, though, claims that Mourinho is looking to bring in Everton’s Romelu Lukaku which would see Rooney return to his boyhood club as part of the deal.
ONE IN, ONE OUT
It’s being claimed that Everton are demanding £100 million for the Belgian, with the Premier League’s top scorer also linked with a return to former club, Chelsea. As expected, United don’t want to pay that sizeable price tag and will be looking to offload their captain in the process.
On the flip side, Rooney is currently valued at £17 million but it’s evident that he’ll need to take a substantial pay cut should he return to Goodison Park, and will probably demand a large pay-off to cover the final two years of his contract - and the Merseyside club only value him at £10 million.
Mourinho sees Lukaku as the long-term replacement for Zlatan Ibrahimovic, regardless of the outcome of his knee injury and whether he sticks around for another year or not.
Mourinho did sell Lukaku to Everton in a £28 million deal back in 2014, but considering the 24-year-old is represented by Mino Raiola – who also represents Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba and Henrikh Mkhitaryan – the fee probably won’t stand in the way of a move taking place.
The Portuguese boss has remained critical of his side failing to convert their chances this season, so perhaps a mega-money deal could solve all his problems next year, even if it means Rooney is the sacrificial lamb in any potential deal.
Would you be happy to see Lukaku and Rooney trade places in the summer? Have YOUR say in the comments section below.
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