DC United confirm Wayne Rooney will join Derby County after 2019 MLS season
What's the story?
DC United have officially announced that Wayne Rooney will leave the outfit after the conclusion of 2019 MLS season, with Derby County confirming that the forward will join the Championship club in January.
In case you didn't know...
Rooney left England at the end of the 2017-18 season to join MLS side DC United after 16 long years in the Premier League with Everton and Manchester United.
The forward burst into the scene as a teenager with Everton in 2002 before joining Manchester United two years later, thus becoming the most expensive teenager at that time.
Rooney spent 13 seasons at Old Trafford, making 559 appearances and scoring 253 goals, winning every possible trophy with the club, before moving back to Everton in 2017.
Rooney spent just one season with Everton before moving to the US. The Englishman has so far made 45 appearances and scored 25 goals for DC United.
The heart of the matter
DC United have officially announced that Rooney will join Derby County at the end of the 2019 MLS season. The England forward will join the Rams on an initial 18-month deal in a player-coach role.
Derby County manager Philip Cocu was delighted at having Rooney in his coaching squad. He told the club's official website,
"Wayne Rooney is an extremely talented and top-class footballer. It is an exciting prospect for him to be joining Derby County and he can bring so much to this squad, both on and off the pitch. He has enjoyed a wonderful career, both in club football and for England, and he still has so much to give as well.
"His credentials speak for themselves. But to have a player with his leadership, skill, experience, character and work ethic will be huge for us. He knows what it takes to succeed as a player and I have no doubt he will have a positive impact right across the club."
In a press conference following the annoucement of the deal, Rooney said:
"I remain fully focused on giving my all for the team for the rest of this season and repaying the support shown by the Black-and-Red faithful by hopefully delivering an MLS Cup to Audi Field.
"While the decision to move home was a tough one, family is everything to us and we make this change to be closer to the ones we love back in England. The opportunity to go back home and start the next step of my career in coaching was the factor that made my mind up. I would like to thank everyone at D.C. United for the incredible support my family and I have received over my two seasons at the club."
D.C. United are currently in fourth place in the Eastern Conference standings, six points adrift of the top spot.