Wayne Rooney is still “one of the best in his position” and can lead Everton to the next level, says Ronald Koeman.
Rooney is one a number of new acquisitions to arrive over the summer, and Koeman has seen enough of the England international to know he will have a huge impact on the squad both on and off the pitch.
The Everton graduate netted his second goal in three pre-season games against Genk on Saturday, and Koeman has recognised the qualities he has added to his squad.
“He has a lot of experience,” said the Blues boss. “He is an important player on the pitch but also important for his teammates and certainly the young players to show them what you need to do to reach that high standard of football.
“That means he needs to be a leader off the pitch and if I see how he’s working and what he’s doing with all the players it’s really what we want. Every day in training so far and in the friendlies, you see why he’s one of the best in his position and one of the best players.”
Rooney joins the likes of Michael Keane and Davy Klaassen as new faces in the squad, with fellow new recruits Jordan Pickford, Sandro Ramirez and Cuco Martina linking up with the group during the training camp in Holland this past week.
Koeman was pleased to see his additions settling in quickly while back in his homeland, and believes they have added plenty of quality to the squad.
“I’m really happy with how the new players have settled in,” the Blues boss added. “We have a really good team. It’s easy to come to Everton Football Club for the new players. The rest of the squad are open people and the new players feel at home when they move here.
“They have great futures at Everton and provide the quality we need to improve.”