The prodigal son has returned to Goodison Park after a 13-year spell at Manchester United, with Wayne Rooney penning a two-year deal with boyhood club Everton.
But besides the fact it’s a feel-good story for Toffees fans, it’s a great bit of business from Ronald Koeman.
While his talented squad impressed last term, their top-six push buckled in the closing weeks of last season, with the Merseyside outfit taking just four points from their final five games – and netting just twice in the process.
The main issue seemed to be a lack of experience and nous in getting the job done at a crucial stage of the season. With that in mind, a player of Rooney’s pedigree could be vital.
Last term’s Europa League triumph meant the 31-year-old had won every available honour at Manchester United – having also lifted the Premier League (five times), Champions League, League Cup (three times), FA Cup and Club World Cup.
Having a player with that ability to make the difference in key games is obviously a huge asset in and of itself, but it’s also experience the legendary striker can pass onto his talented younger teammates.
Stats suggest Roo has plenty more to give
However, his pedigree in the game is far from all Rooney has to offer. Despite the fact his peak is almost certainly behind him, the Croxteth native’s stats remain impressive.
‘Wazza’ chalked up eight goals and 10 assists for the Red Devils last term, despite starting a modest 25 games. As for the 2015-16 season, the club’s all-time record goalscorer managed 15 goals in 42 outings – hardly a record to be sniffed at.
England’s record goalscorer has also become increasingly versatile during recent years, playing at least five games in four different positions last term – centre forward, secondary striker, attacking midfield and left wing.
That adaptability could prove vital as Koeman searches for the winning formula in a much changed squad, with Rooney the eighth senior signing of the summer – following the likes of Davy Klaasen, Michael Keane and Sandro Ramirez in moving to the blue half of Merseyside.
Odds-compilers in agreement that Wazza can rekindle old magic
And last but not least, there’s the inevitable buzz which will surround the return of a player whose rise at the club saw him become a genuine terrace hero at Goodison Park, and whose loss caused such emotion and hurt when he left for Old Trafford in 2004.
His return is sure to lift the fans, staff and players at a club where he made such an enduring impact in a fairly short period of time. And at £10m for all of that, he looks like an absolute bargain.
Fans who also expect Rooney to make a major impact on his Everton return can back the boyhood blue to score 9+ Premier League goals next term at 8/11, while it’s 5/2 he lifts any major trophy in the famous blue and white.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing