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Rooney deal sends him top of rich list

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Manchester United's Wayne Rooney

Manchester United's Wayne Rooney

Manchester United's Wayne Rooney

Wayne Rooney will end the uncertainty over his Manchester United future this week by signing a £300,000-a-week contract at Old Trafford.

As revealed on January 25, Rooney has chosen to abandon plans to leave United this summer in order to commit himself to a five-and-half-year deal which will tie him to the club until 2019, when he will be approaching his 34th birthday.

The deal will make Rooney the highest paid player in English football history when he eventually puts pen to paper.

Negotiations between both parties made good progress last month and Rooney had been expected to sign his new deal before the end of January.

However, fine-tuning of the contract has yet to be concluded and although it is understood that both sides have now reached an outline agreement, no deal has yet been signed.

With Rooney in Dubai with David Moyes's squad on a mid-season training break, the deal is unlikely to be signed formally until the England forward returns to Manchester later this week.

However, the club and the player's representatives could bring forward plans for a staged signing by having Rooney pen the contract in the Middle East today should they regard an agreement as finalised.

With Rooney's future now secure, the player's decision to remain at Old Trafford will be viewed as a victory for Moyes and executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, who both stood firm last summer when the 28-year-old attempted to force through a move to Chelsea.

The Stamford Bridge outfit submitted two offers –- both rejected – for Rooney following the breakdown of the player's relationship with former United manager Alex Ferguson.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho had been determined to lure Rooney to the club to solve his attacking problems, but the London team are now expected to pursue Atletico Madrid's Diego Costa following Rooney's decision to stay at United.

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Rooney's successful contract negotiations have been completed, despite United's on-field difficulties, with the club languishing in seventh position and with their prospects of qualifying for next season's Champions League relying heavily on their ability to win this year's competition.

United's owners, the Glazer family, are committed to investing heavily in the squad in the summer in order to make the team competitive again, however, and it is understood that Rooney has been impressed by the ambitions of the owners, Woodward and Moyes.

United face a trip to play Crystal Palace on Saturday before travelling to Olympiakos for the Champions League last-16 first leg next week.

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They are currently 11 points behind fourth-placed Liverpool in the Premier League table, who they will face at Old Trafford on March 16 – nine days before meeting neighbours Manchester City at home.

The FA Cup third-round defeat to Swansea has left a rare gap in the United calendar and Rooney admitted it could prove to be vastly beneficial as they approach the business end of the season.

"We have a bit of a break before our next game now and hopefully we can prepare well and kick on for the big matches coming up," he said. "It's nice to spend time together. When you're at home you go to training then you go home and see your families, but with trips like this you're training then spending time with the lads."

Meanwhile, with defender Nemanja Vidic confirming earlier this month that he will leave in the summer and Rio Ferdinand also expected to move on, United are expected to turn their attentions to resolving Patrice Evra's future at the club, with the French full-back out of contract at the end of the season.

Both United and Evra have options written into the 32-year-old's contract entitling the former Monaco defender to a 12-month extension, but neither side has yet chosen to trigger the one-year add-on. Monaco are keen to re-sign Evra, with United likely to make a move for Southampton defender Luke Shaw. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph Media Group Limited [2022]


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