Wayne Rooney "flattered" as he breaks silence on links to become next Everton manager



Posted Saturday, January 22, 2022 by Dailystar.co.uk

Wayne Rooney has played down rumours linking him to the Everton job - but did concede that he is "flattered" by suggestions he could be the man to lead the Toffees forward

Wayne Rooney says he’s ‘flattered’ at being linked with the Everton manager’s job.

Scouser Rooney grew up supporting the club and admitted he’s aware of all the speculation.

The Derby County boss started his career at Goodison Park and made his debut for them at just 16 years old before moving on to Manchester United.

He’s now been widely tipped to return as successor to Rafa Benitez, who was sacked earlier this week.

But Rooney, desperately trying to keep financially-stricken Derby in the Championship, distanced himself from any talk of taking over the Toffees' dugout.

Rooney said: “I’m the same as everybody else. I see the speculation and of course, Everton is a club I grew up supporting.

Wayne Rooney
Rooney has affirmed himself to Derrby for now (Image: Getty Images)

“I’m flattered to be brought up in these conversations but I know Everton know that they have to go through the administrators if they want to speak to me.”

Everton recently sacked Rafa Benitez after a string of pour performances, with Duncan Ferguson, Rooney's former teammate, filling the caretaker role once again.

Asked if there had been any application for permission to speak to him, Rooney said: “It’s all hearsay. There’s been no application. My focus is entirely on Derby County and the massive game against Nottingham Forest.”

Derby will travel to their nearby rivals City Ground for Saturday's 12.30pm kick-off amid stark uncertainty around the club's future.

A recent statement from the EFL said that the Rams are facing the threat of liquidation unless their grave financial situation is resolved.

Wycombe Wanderers and Middlesbrough have recently bought legal action and this has added to the crisis currently engulfing the club.

Wayne Rooney
Rooney famously made his Everton debut in 2002 at the age of 16 (Image: GETTY)

The club's administrators have announced that they will tell the EFL of their blueprint around funding the side until the end of the season within a matter of days.

The League has asked for proof of funding by February 1, meaning that time is running short for the club to turn things around.

"By the administrator's own forecasting, the club will run out of cash by February, therefore sourcing funds is of paramount importance to ensure they can compete for the rest of the season," an EFL statement said.

Derby's administrators followed with their own statement.

"We have provided the EFL with three scenarios as to how that funding gap can be bridged and the EFL await further confirmation from us as to which scenario we plan to deliver. This will be dealt with over the next few days," Quantuma said.

Wayne Rooney
Somehow, Derby have won four of their last five Championship fixtures (Image: Getty Images)

Administrators also confirmed Derby are unable to sign players until the EFL are happy with the club's books. ".

The three potential buyers for the club are not so far not willing to proceed with their takeover until the legal standoff between the club, Middlesbrough and Wycombe is wrapped up.

The clubs say that, due to Derby's financial rule breaches, Middlesbrough failed to reach the play-offs in 2019 - while Wycombe would have remained in the Championship last season had Derby's point deduction for this campaign been handed to them last season.

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