Wayne Rooney Signs For Derby County On 18-Month Deal From January
Wayne Rooney has signed an 18-month contract with Championship side Derby County to be a player-coach at Pride Park.
The deal will start in January 2020 with the option of a further year to develop his coaching credentials in preparation for a potential managerial career.
Derby County manager Phillip Cocu believes Rooney will bring a huge amount to the Championship side:
"Wayne Rooney is an extremely talented and top-class footballer." he told the club's official website.
"It is an exciting prospect for him to be joining Derby County and he can bring so much to this squad, both on and off the pitch. He has enjoyed a wonderful career, both in club football and for England, and he still has so much to give as well.
"His credentials speak for themselves. But to have a player with his leadership, skill, experience, character and work ethic will be huge for us. He knows what it takes to succeed as a player and I have no doubt he will have a positive impact right across the club.
"The inspiration and motivation this can generate is massive for all of our players from the first team right through to the youngsters in the Academy. It is entirely in keeping with, and in support of, the club's philosophy and approach.
"I am looking forward to working with Wayne from the start of next year and welcoming him to the club."
Rooney himself can't wait to get started at Pride Park come January.
"I am very excited about the opportunity that Derby County have provided me with." he told the club's official website.
"I am looking forward to joining Phillip Cocu, his coaching staff and the first-team squad from the start of January. I am sure I can make a big contribution and can't wait to meet everyone, especially the supporters.
"I am equally excited to begin my coaching career at Derby County working with both the first team and Academy.
"I must also take this opportunity to thank DC United, their owners, executives and supporters who have been superb to work with. I want them to know that I will give my all in support of our push for the play-offs."
Derby County owner Mel Morris confirmed the club have been in talks with the former Manchester United striker about a transfer in recent days.
"It's literally only been a couple of days in the offing," Morris told talkSPORT.
"The starting point was that we understood he was keen to return to the UK and we decided to see if we could do something off the back of that. It's never done until it's done and obviously we are very focused and keen to get this over the line."
Rooney has enjoyed a prolific spell with DC United since joining the club in June last year. The 33-year-old has so far netted ten times this season and continues to be vital cog in Ben Olsen's side.
Last month, he spoke about how much he has enjoyed playing for DC, as well as admitting that he's received a number of managerial offers from the US and England:
"There's already offers which have been made, but at the minute I'm still a player," he told Sky Sports.
"I want to enjoy playing, then I'll see which offers are right when I do finish.
"There's an opportunity for me to go into management straight away, and when I do hang my boots up, that decision will be made on what the ambition of the club is, what my ambitions are and what's right for both myself and that team."