Rooney relishes his return to Everton blue

Rooney pulled on an Everton shirt for the first time in 11 years
Rooney pulled on an Everton shirt for the first time in 11 years

Once a blue, always a blue.

It was the tagline Wayne Rooney promoted as he made his way through the ranks at Everton and it was also the stick used to beat him with as he quickly switched allegiances when Manchester United came calling in 2004.

Jeers and ridicule have been the inevitable outcome every time he has returned to Goodison Park since, but the England captain received a very different reception as he turned out in an Everton shirt in the Duncan Ferguson testimonial on Sunday.

Rooney admits he is still an Everton fan on the quiet and his son watch on in a blue Everton shirt as he received a hearty reception from the Evertons fans who were on hand to pay tribute to Goodison Park icon Ferguson.

"I was delighted with the fans' reaction," said Rooney.

"I didn't know what to expect but it was great for me and my kids, to see me once in an Everton shirt. It brought back some good old memories.

"I enjoyed it. It is nice to come back here and the fans gave me a great reception which obviously I was delighted with."

"It was nice to get some minutes on the pitch alongside Duncan=.

"I saw a bit of space and thought I would try my luck, unfortunately it didn't go in but it was a great occasion and great to get out on the pitch with Duncan again.

"Most importantly it was a big day for Duncan and he really enjoyed the game and it was good to see him back on the pitch.

"Of course, it was a bit different today. Going into the home dressing room again was a bit weird at first. I didn't know what to expect with the reception but it was great and I really appreciate it."

Rooney can expect a very different reaction when he heads back to Goodison in Manchester United red on October 17th, but for one afternoon only, the Everton faithful held back on their venom as a former son was welcomed back into the blue family.