Wayne Rooney to line out for Everton in Duncan Ferguson testimonial

Man United captain will play for his boyhood club against Villarreal at Goodison Park

Wayne Rooney

will play for Everton again at Goodison Park after agreeing to feature in Duncan Ferguson’s testimonial

against Villarreal.

The Scot was a former mentor and team-mate of Rooney's at Everton, the boyhood club of the Manchester United captain. Ferguson had three spells at the club, the first on loan. During the last of these, between 2000-06, Rooney made his debut in August 2002.


Rooney, who is on United's pre-season tour of America, said: "As a young lad growing up in Croxteth, Duncan Ferguson was a hero of mine; as a young player at the club he was an inspiration; and when I broke into the first team he helped and looked after me.

Fully deserved

“I cannot think of a better way to thank Dunc for all he did for me than turning out in his fully deserved testimonial match. Had he not asked me to play I would have gone and supported him on the day as I am sure most other Evertonians will.”

Ferguson said: “I’m absolutely delighted that the wee man has agreed to play. Everybody knows that we go way back. I knew him as a kid, he’s a top man and I’m proud as his friend that he’s fulfilled the potential we always knew was there. Wayne’s a world-class player and I’m genuinely thrilled that he will play, just as I’m so grateful to the club for putting on this game.”

The match takes place on August 2nd, six days before United face Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford in the season opener so it would be expected Rooney will have only a light run out.

Raheem Sterling has denied that he "threw a sicknote in" during his final days as a Liverpool player in order to force through his move to Manchester City.

The winger was said to be unsettled at Anfield after two failed bids by Manchester City and missed two days of Liverpool pre-season training at Melwood earlier this month, which was widely seen as an attempt to force Liverpool’s hand to sell, but Sterling has now insisted that he stayed at home on doctor’s orders.

“Everyone thought I threw a sicknote in,” Sterling said. “I was in training on the Tuesday – in the changing room my stomach started hurting. I still went out and trained though.

“That day I went home, and I told the doc I was ill. My stomach was rumbling and I had diarrhoea. The doctor just said to me you can’t be around the other players. For the next 48 hours, I stayed at home. That’s what the club doctor told me to do. When that 48 hours was done I came back to training as normal.” Guardian Service