Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney was back in Everton colours on Sunday as he featured for his former club during a friendly encounter with Villarreal for the testimonial of Goodison Park legend Duncan Ferguson.
It is almost 13 years since Rooney burst onto the scene as a fresh-faced teenager from the Everton academy, scoring a breathtaking winner against Arsenal to establish himself as the most coveted young talent in the game.
After two full campaigns in the Everton first team, Rooney moved to Manchester United for a record fee for a player aged under 20, and he has since been able to mark himself out as one of the club’s most iconic players.
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But Rooney has always maintained that he remains an Everton supporter and, although the club’s fans may not feel such affection to him given his departure from Merseyside, would surely have always hoped he would pull on the blue jersey once again.
Well, that opportunity came this weekend in what was to be a 2-1 loss for Everton against their Spanish opposition on an occasion to mark 20 years of service from Ferguson.
Rooney, who played up front with Ferguson during his time as a Toffee, was introduced into proceedings with 15 minutes remaining, coming on in place of former Manchester United teammate Tom Cleverley, and received a standing ovation.
But, as photos emerged of Rooney in his Everton kit, confusion abounded on the internet as fans asked just why the Manchester United striker was back playing for his former club.
However, do not fear United fans, it was simply on a one-off basis and Rooney will be back skippering the Red Devils when they begin the Premier League campaign against Tottenham next weekend.
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