Wayne Rooney for Romelu Lukaku: The swap deal to divide Everton and Manchester United

Who would you rather have in your team for the next five years? Everton's Romelu Lukaku or Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney?

He is just 13 goals away from equalling Sir Bobby Charlton's all time Manchester United goals record. But is Wayne Rooney ever going to be revered by fans in the same way as the legendary midfielder still is?

Rooney is struggling for form and is the club captain, and an improvement is needed if the team are to stand a chance of winning the Premier League title this season.

He has just two goals in 10 Premier League games, but this increases to six in 16 when taking in other competitions, including the Champions League qualifiers.

One club where he would receive more adulation than at United would be his former club Everton, for who he returned in the summer for Duncan Ferguson's testimonial, 11 years after leaving Goodison Park.

It's very possible to see him making a return there one day - but what about if both clubs tried to do a deal now involving a swap for Romelu Lukaku?

Let Everton get something they really want in return

Romelu Lukaku is Everton's record signing and is seen as a key part of their path to success both now and in the future. The highly talented Belgian is no guarantee to stick around though, with his agent claiming last week that he will be allowed to leave at the right price.

Selling him abroad, where he cannot come back and haunt Everton, would probably be the preferable option if they had to - but what if they could get a prize asset in return - Wayne Rooney? Then doing a deal with Manchester United may be worth considering.

From Manchester United's perspective, fed up fans would surely approve this right now. Let go of waning Wayne, for a powerful forward who could thrive alongside Anthony Martial, with Juan Mata and Memphis Depay in behind.

The same could apply to Everton that they have the striker with the greater upside, yet if faced with the possibility that they are going to lose him at some stage, doing a deal for Rooney would be a smart play.

Sacrifice for homecoming

No doubt about it, Rooney's return to Everton would be greeted with mass hysteria, and the fallout of his controversial 2004 move would quickly be forgotten.

Rooney would not be simply stopping by, but be back in Everton colours for the remainder of his career. Still just 30, he could have five or so seasons at the top - and with less pressure than he faces at United, he could get back to enjoying his football again and re-capturing his mojo.

If the deal was to stand any chance of happening, Rooney would have to prove his love for Everton in the process.

He would need to make a huge sacrifice in terms of his weekly earnings, potentially halving what he makes per week at Manchester United, and at the most, cutting it by two-thirds.

To get his dream move back to Everton, if he no longer desire to be at Manchester United, it could be worth it, for a player who has already earned more than he ever could have dreamed of as a kid.

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