Speaking to The Sun, Wayne Rooney said: “Sir Alex Ferguson tried to sign me when I was 14. He was on the phone to my mum and dad.
“They said, ‘Alex is on the phone, Manchester United want to sign you’. I said, ‘Tell him to f*** off. I want to play for Everton’.
“Then, as time went on, I knew I had to play for Alex Ferguson. The reason I signed for Manchester United was Alex Ferguson.”
Rooney ended up moving to Old Trafford at the age of 18, joining the Red Devils in 2004 for £20 million which was the highest fee ever paid for a player under 20 years old at the time.
The England forward retained his affection for Everton (and hatred for Liverpool) throughout his career, rejoining his boyhood side for one season in 2018 before moving to the MLS.