Manchester United could sell Wayne Rooney back to Everton, just as Romelu Lukaku would be rejoining his former coach, Jose Mourinho.

Rooney's footballing future should become clearer within the next 24 hours as Manchester United prepare to fly to Los Angeles for a pre-season tour in the United States.

While they hope to add Lukaku, the £75 million striker they are luring from Everton, to their Stateside roster, Rooney looks likely to be left off the flight.

The terms of his move back to Everton, the club where he began his career, are being negotiated.

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That may not prove the end of his playing-time problems, however, because even if the fine print over contract length and image rights are picked through, Rooney may face a struggle to win over sceptics on Merseyside.

The more blue-blooded among Everton supporters never truly forgave Rooney for his £25.6 million move to Old Trafford 13 years ago.

Others struggle to see how a 31-year-old consigned to United's fringes by Jose Mourinho last season would help the fast-flowing football being developed by Everton manager Ronald Koeman.wayne Rooney leaving Manchester united

The statistics are not encouraging. The past two seasons have been the least productive in terms of goals of Rooney's career -- 4 and 8, respectively -- while Mourinho, who began his reign by warmly praising Rooney's striking prowess, did not trust him to deliver despite few options up front.

To sign Rooney, who remains the record goal-scorer for United and England, would certainly represent a coup and add a touch of showbiz to a club who have remained in the footlights outside the top six for the past decade.