Rooney On 'Great' Everton Goalscoring Feeling
Wayne Rooney made a goalscoring return for Everton in the opening pre-season win against Kenyan side Gor Mahia in Tanzania on Thursday.
Rooney announced himself to the English game in 2002 with a brilliant first Premier League goal against Arsenal. A similar effort marked his return from Manchester United against Gor Mahia.
A 30 yard effort gave Gor Mahia goalkeeper Boniface Oluoch little chance as Rooney, 31, opened the scoring for Everton, having been named in the starting XI as a forward, before coming off, like the rest, at half time.
Rooney said scoring for the Blues again was 'a great feeling' he's been looking forward to since the prospect of returning arose in a 45 minutes that will help his, and his teammates' fitness.
He told the Official Website: 'To score for Everton again is a great feeling. It`s something I`ve been thinking of for the last couple of weeks, once I knew [the move] was happening. Thankfully, I`ve done it in today`s game and that 45 minutes will only help.'
Adding: 'I just received the ball from out wide and I was in a bit of space so I took my chance and thankfully it went in. I was pleased with it. It`s a good start but I think we have to improve still. It`s early days and we knew it would be a tough game in tough conditions but I thought we did well.'
Victory was secured by another fine goal from England U20 World Cup winner Kieran Dowell in the second half.
You'll always take a win and Rooney was happy to get this from a game that sets Everton on the patch to achieving full fitness ahead of the new campaign.
He said: 'The game was important to us in terms of building our fitness for the season and it was great to get a goal in my first game back. It`s always important to win the game but I think the most important thing today was we all got a good 45 minutes under our belts.'
Now it's onto the next stage of pre-season.
Rooney concluded: 'Obviously there`s things we can do better but the most important thing is getting the minutes under your belt. We`ve got a couple more games in Holland next week so we`ll look forward to them and make sure we are right for the start of the season.'
Ronald Koeman, who took the decision to play Rooney as a forward, which the Dutchman insisted would be the case upon his return to Merseyside anyway, praised the England international.
The boss told the Official Website: '[Rooney] is still one of the best in his position. He is a winner, who knows how to win titles and we want that. We spoke about more productivity for the strikers and you saw what he did today. He can be a key player.'