Rooney wanted across the pond

LONDON • Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney has been identified as a possible target by Los Angeles FC (LAFC), the latest Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise.

LAFC will enter MLS in 2018, when Rooney's contract at Old Trafford is due to expire.

United have the option to extend their captain's deal by another season but the 31-year-old's long-term future has been cast into doubt after manager Jose Mourinho started him in only one of the club's past six Premier League games.

Although Rooney has told friends he is determined to see out his contract, the Englishman previously stated that he would consider a move to the United States.

LAFC owner Tom Penn said: "Wayne Rooney is an example of the calibre of player we are looking to bring to LAFC.

"He is one of 10 names we are looking at. We are still 18 months away from our first MLS game, so we will see if players of Rooney's status and reputation are interested."

  • 6

    Number of clubs, including Chicago Fire, who are interested in signing Manchester United's 32-year-old German midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger.

Cesc Fabregas, the Chelsea midfielder, and Bayer Leverkusen striker Javier Hernandez are among the other players LAFC are said to be considering.

Rooney's club team-mate Bastian Schweinsteiger could also be heading to the MLS, with the Chicago Fire heading a list of six clubs who are interested in signing the United outcast.

The 32-year-old met Chicago's coach Veljko Paunovic at an Italian restaurant in the Cheshire village of Hale, where the midfielder lives, over the weekend.

Paunovic is believed to have spoken to the former Bayern Munich player about moving to the MLS franchise, who finished bottom of the Eastern Conference in the recently-concluded regular season.

Another United player with his future in doubt is Memphis Depay, with Ronald Koeman indicating an interest in his compatriot.

The Everton manager has also tipped Merseyside rivals Liverpool to be among the sides fighting for the English Premier League title this season.

"It's still too early to say who will be the favourites but I have been impressed by Liverpool so far," Koeman told ESPN.

"Maybe that is not what you might expect the Everton manager to say but they have been playing some very good football and deserve to be at the top.

"Of course they can be champions this season, they have a good chance, but they are not the only contenders."

THE TIMES, LONDON, REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2016, with the headline 'Rooney wanted across the pond'. Print Edition | Subscribe