Could Wayne Rooney’s return debut for Everton be against Kenya’s Gor Mahia FC?

Wayne Rooney Euro 2012
Daniele De Rossi tackles Wayne Rooney at the Euro 2012 fixture between England and Italy. Photo: (used under the Creative Commons licence)

Manchester United and England star Wayne Rooney is expected to make a return to his former club Everton this summer after Manchester United agreed a £75m fee for Toffees striker Romelu Lukaku.

The Reds are set to allow Rooney to re-sign for the club where he started his career for free, which has made the switch to Goodison Park even more likely.

With the mouth-watering prospect of one of their favourite sons returning to the club, Everton supporters have been debating which fixture will give them their first glimpse of Rooney back in a blue shirt. But it looks like East African football fans will be the lucky ones as it seems likely that should he sign, he second debut for the club will be against a Kenyan team.

Manchester United 2016
Wayne Rooney playing for Manchester United in 2016. Photo: (used under the Creative Commons licence)

Everton have scheduled a pre-season friendly in nearby Tanzania, and today, they announced they will be playing Kenyan team Gor Mahia FC.

Gor Mahia are Kenya’s most successful club. They have won the national league a record 15 times and recently won a competition between African sides, beating fellow Kenyan team AFC Leopards 3-0, which has earned them the right to take on the Premier League team.

This victory came thanks to second-half goals from Timothy Otieno, Oliver Maloba and John Ndirangu. So on July 13, they will play Ronald Koeman’s men at the 60,000-seater Tanzania National Stadium, hopefully with Wayne Rooney in the team.

Rooney’s first Everton debut also had a Kenyan connection, albeit a tenuous one.

In August 2002, the young Evertonian played 67 minutes in a Premier League game against UK High Commissioner to Kenya Nic Hailey’s favourite team, Tottenham Hotspur.

After signing for Manchester United, he scored a hat-trick in his debut helping Alex Ferguson’s men beat Fenerbahce 6-2 in the Champions League.


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