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Transfer Rater: Mertens to Man United

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Wayne Rooney could return to Man United as club ambassador - sources

Craig Burley reacts to the comments from Wayne Rooney on Man United's recent struggles to maintain club standards.
Wayne Rooney says he's been thinking of scoring on his return to Everton ever since he knew the deal was happening.

Wayne Rooney could return to Manchester United as club ambassador after he retires despite leaving Old Trafford for Everton this summer, sources have told ESPN FC.

Rooney left United after 13 years to return to his boyhood club in a move that helped Jose Mourinho secure Romelu Lukaku for £75 million from Goodison Park.

The 31-year-old agreed to become a United ambassador as part of the contract he signed in 2014. The deal is now void after he signed for Everton. But sources say the offer to become a club representative after he hangs up his boots is still on the table.

It is unlikely Rooney could take it up -- if he chooses to accept -- before 2019 after he signed a two-year contract at Everton.

He could earn as much as £100,000 a year representing United at home and abroad.

Wayne Rooney could be welcomed back to United with open arms after his spell at Everton.

Former manager Sir Alex Ferguson, who retired in 2013, earned £2.165 million from his role as a global ambassador during the 2013-14 season.

Former players Bryan Robson, Denis Irwin, Mikael Silvestre, Dwight Yorke, David May and Bojan Djordjic are with the team on their tour of the United States to do media and promotional work.

Paddy Crerand, a European Cup winner in 1968, is also in the U.S. as part of his role with in-house television channel MUTV.

Rooney left the club as their top scorer with 253 goals in all competitions after breaking the record Sir Bobby Charlton had held for 44 years.

His 559 appearances also puts him sixth on the all-time list behind Ryan Giggs, Charlton, Paul Scholes, Bill Foulkes and Gary Neville.

He is also one of United's most decorated players, having won 12 major trophies including five Premier League titles and the Champions League in 2008.

If Rooney decides to return to United he would join a list of club ambassadors that also includes Ferguson, Charlton, Robson, Yorke, Denis Law, Neville, Andy Cole, Peter Schmeichel, Park Ji Sung.

Rob is ESPN FC's Manchester United correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @RobDawsonESPN.

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