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United welcome prodigy Rooney

Published: Tuesday 31 August 2004, 21.10CET
England striker Wayne Rooney has left Everton FC for Manchester United FC in a €29.6m transfer.

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Published: Tuesday 31 August 2004, 21.10CET

United welcome prodigy Rooney

England striker Wayne Rooney has left Everton FC for Manchester United FC in a €29.6m transfer.
Wayne Rooney has completed his departure from Everton FC by signing for Manchester United FC in a €29.6m transfer. Rooney has signed a six-year contract until 30 June 2010.

Breakdown of fee
Besides the initial €29.6m outlay - half of which will be paid immediately - United could also pay as much as €10.4m extra depending on Rooney's appearances and achievements at Old Trafford. Everton will definitely get €4.4m if Rooney is still a United player in three years' time and the Merseyside club are entitled to 25 per cent of any future transfer fee.

Fearless performances
The 18-year-old England striker, who lit up UEFA EURO 2004™ with his four goals and fearless performances, passed a medical at Old Trafford today and finalised the details of the transfer ahead of tomorrow's midday deadline for registering players for the UEFA Champions League.

Unconvincing start
Rooney's arrival will bring a fresh spark to a United side who, despite overcoming FC Dinamo Bucuresti in the Champions League third qualifying round, have made an unconvincing start in the Premiership. Their goalless draw with Everton yesterday left them with one win from four matches.

Intense speculation
Rooney's future at Everton had been the subject of intense media speculation in England since his performances in Portugal. He had two years remaining on his contract at Everton and had stalled on replying to the club's offer of a new five-year deal worth €75,000 a week.

Transfer request
United finally moved for Rooney after Newcastle United FC made a bid for the player, and on Friday the teenager submitted a transfer request in which he cited his desire to play European football. "The Euros were a fantastic experience for me, it made me realise I could play at the highest level," he said. "To do that, I need to be with a club that is playing in Europe every year."

Remarkable talent
Rooney was just 16 when he struck an unforgettable first goal in English league football, a wonderful last-minute winner against Arsenal FC which ended the champions' then 30-match unbeaten run. The son of Everton season-ticket holders, he became an instant hero at the Merseyside club. Now he leaves his boyhood favourites at 18, having scored just 17 goals in an Everton shirt. It is Old Trafford, not Goodison Park, which will see the best of this remarkable talent.

Last updated: 02/09/04 9.27CET

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