Wayne Rooney: Everton boss Marco Silva says 'club legend' could still stay

Silva (left) was joined by director of football Marcel Brands for his first news conference
Silva (left) was joined by director of football Marcel Brands for his first news conference

New Everton manager Marco Silva says the "door is open" for Wayne Rooney to stay, despite his talks with DC United.

Rooney, 32, has agreed a deal in principle with the US side, but has a year left on his Everton deal.

In his first news conference as Everton boss, Silva said he had a small list of 'big name' transfer targets but had not ruled out Rooney staying on.

"Rooney is a club legend and we need to understand everything," said Silva. "The door is open every time for him."

Silva was joined at the news conference by recently installed director of football Marcel Brands.

The Dutchman said it remained a "possibility" that Rooney would leave, but said a future coaching role at Goodison Park could be an option if he did.

"We will talk with him," said Brands. "If this is a move he wants... then I hope he will return when he is finished there as he is still a legend in this club. At PSV Eindhoven I always hoped to use the legends in the club."

'Big names' - Silva on transfer targets

Silva and Brands
Silva (left) was sacked by Watford in January

Brands, who was appointed last month, said former Hull and Watford boss Silva was the ideal candidate to replace Sam Allardyce as he was a "young, ambitious and modern" coach.

He said Everton's squad is "too big" and neither he nor Silva would comment on their transfer targets, rumoured to include Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho and Newcastle defender Jamaal Lascelles.

Silva added: "We know what we want but the first thing we will do is look inside at what we have.

"I have big names. The list is not so big. It's important to respect our squad and players. We will do everything we can to improve and to put more competition as I like to see competition everyday."

'We must make fans proud'

Silva and Rooney
Rooney (right) scored 11 goals in all competitions last season

Silva is Everton's third manager in less than a year after the sacking of Ronald Koeman in October and Allardyce in May.

Allardyce guided the Toffees to an eighth-place finish but was criticised by sections of the fanbase for a style of play which meant Everton had the lowest number of shots on goal in the league during his time in charge.

Silva was sacked by Watford in January after a run of one win in 11 games, with the Hornets' board putting the poor form down to interest shown in the Portuguese by Everton.

The relationship between the clubs remains fractious, but Silva said he was now focused on a move which made him "very proud" and "excited".

"I joined here not for one, two or three years but for something more," added Silva. "It's a big challenge. The club have shown how big the project is. It's a huge club, a huge story behind us.

"First, the only thing important is for our fans to be proud of the team. We have to build a strong connection between us and them. There is a fantastic atmosphere here, they push the team. They are demanding.

"Fans reflect how big the club is. We need to give them some good feelings."

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