Wayne Rooney touches down in Washington ahead of DC United return

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Wayne Rooney has agreed contract terms to become the new coach of MLS team DC United as the former England captain makes a return to the United States capital.

Rooney, 36, played for DC United in 2018 and 2019, scoring 25 goals in 52 matches, and was filmed arriving at Dulles Airport on Sunday night as he closes in on a return in the dug-out.

Rooney traveled alone, without wife Coleen who struggled to settle in Washington when he was a player there.

He has been asking players based in England to join him at DC in recent weeks.

Wayne Rooney has agreed terms to become coach of MLS team DC United, marking a return to the club he played for in 2018 and 2019

Wayne Rooney has agreed terms to become coach of MLS team DC United, marking a return to the club he played for in 2018 and 2019

Rooney touched down at Dulles Airport on Sunday night

The former England captain will hold talks with DC United officials

The former England captain touched down at Dulles Airport in Washington on Sunday night as he prepares to finalize his deal to take charge of the MLS club

Rooney's wife Coleen (right) admitted moving to Washington in 2018 was 'tough' for her

Rooney’s wife Coleen (right) admitted moving to Washington in 2018 was ‘tough’ for her

The Washington Post reported that Rooney is close to agreeing a deal, with the ex-Everton and Manchester United forward telling reporters and fans at the airport he has a ‘few things to sort out.’

Sportsmail had revealed the news on Friday that Rooney had been lined up for a shock return to DC United.

Rooney left League One side Derby County at the end of June having been unable to prevent the crisis-stricken club from relegation out of the Championship.

He received plenty of plaudits for the way he led a club in administration and severe financial difficulties.

You heard it here first.... Sportsmail revealed news of Rooney's return to DC United on Friday

You heard it here first…. Sportsmail revealed news of Rooney’s return to DC United on Friday

The Post reports that Rooney is expected to agree to a multi-year contract worth at least $1 million (£830,000) annually. He will act as a consultant for DC United until he is granted a work permit, which typically takes two to three weeks.

By means of comparison, a survey by Sportsmail from 2020 revealed that Championship managers in England, as Rooney was last season, earn on average £878,000-a-year, while in League One that drops to £182,438.

Rooney will inherit a struggling team with DC second bottom of the MLS Eastern Conference, having won just five of 17 matches so far this season.

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They were thrashed 7-0 by Philadelphia in their latest outing on Saturday, the heaviest defeat in the history of the club.

Rooney had a successful two-year spell at DC United, where he scored 25 goals in 52 games

Rooney had a successful two-year spell at DC United, where he scored 25 goals in 52 games

Rooney will take over from interim coach Chad Ashton, who is expected to return to the assistant coach role he has performed for the last 15 years. They sacked coach Hernan Losada back in April.

Rooney, who was at Wimbledon with wife Coleen and son Kai on Friday, had a successful two-year spell with the Washington-based side where he scored 25 goals in 52 games and energized the franchise even though his family struggled to settle in the United States.

The move may be easier to manage this time round as the MLS season is due to end in October unless teams are in the play-offs and they will be wrapped up in November with the World Cup in mind.

Rooney has spoken openly about his ambitions to continue coaching here with his ultimate goal to manage Manchester United but a spell back in America would add another string to his bow as he looks to make himself a more accomplished coach.

Rooney and wife Coleen were on Center Court at Wimbledon on Friday afternoon

Rooney and wife Coleen were on Center Court at Wimbledon on Friday afternoon

He has been asked to interview for the manager’s job at Everton previously and will not be short of offers when they arise in the Championship or beyond after the manner in which he handled himself and his players through Derby’s battle to survive – despite the obstacles and points penalties that were thrown against them.

However, Rooney’s wife Coleen could be reluctant for her husband to make the move back to the United States, after stating Washington ‘is quite behind the UK’ when the ex-Man United star moved to the club as a player.

In texts to Rebekah Vardy in 2018, which were revealed earlier this year amid the Wagatha Christie feud, Coleen said: ‘Hiya, hope your all week [well]. We’re ok thanks its tough being on your own though.’

Rooney scored 25 goals in 52 matches for DC United during two years as a player there

Rooney scored 25 goals in 52 matches for DC United during two years as a player there

She added: ‘Washington isn’t the best…. nice to visit but different to live. Not loads for the kids to do, mostly parks, hardly any soft plays and things like that.

It’s quite behind the UK, which I never would have though. But we will get used to it (I hope).

‘Wayne is loving it, and the kids are fine, settled into school straight away. So really happy they are fine. Thanks for the message love xx.’

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