Wayne Rooney has revealed that he was forced out of Everton by club owner Farhad Moshiri.
The former England captain made an emotional return to Goodison Park last season from Manchester United, after he joined the Old Trafford outfit from the Toffees as an 18-year-old.
Although Rooney was Everton’s top scorer in the Premier League, it was a difficult season for him and the club, with the Toffees sacking manager Ronald Koeman and replacing him with controversial former England manager Sam Allardyce last November.
There was plenty of speculation last season that Rooney had a strained relationship with Big Sam, however, he has now revealed that it was in fact the club’s owner Moshiri who wanted him to leave his boyhood.
Rooney has since moved to the MLS with DC United, with Moshiri desperate to get the 33-year-old’s salary off the books, so he could sign new players this summer.
“[Leaving] was the owner’s decision. He knew he was going to bring a lot of players in and wanted to free money up. That’s his decision but I’m disappointed how it happened,” Rooney told The Sunday Times.
“I started to think: ‘Is there something being said?’ So I went to see Sam [Allardyce]. I said ‘listen, I’m not a kid, what’s going on – do you want me or not?’
“Sam was the honest one. He said, ‘If I’m still here next season you might not play as much but I still want you’. But then he said: ‘I’m not sure the owner has the same opinion’. And trying to get an honest answer out of the owner took three months.
“I kept trying and trying. All I wanted was clarity. Even [current Everton boss] Marco Silva was surprised because before he came in he was told I was leaving – but that was before I was told I could leave.”