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Published: 09:03 | 9/6/16

Mourinho pays tribute to Rooney

New Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has paid tribute to Wayne Rooney ahead of his testimonial on August 3.

Mourinho will take charge of United for the first time at Old Trafford when the Red Devils host Rooney's former club Everton to celebrate the captain's 12 years with United.

The Portuguese coach tried to sign Rooney during his time at Chelsea and he has heaped praise on the 30-year-old striker ahead of the charity game.

"Wayne is and has been England’s best player for over a decade and this game will be a fitting tribute to everything he has achieved," Mourinho told the club's official website.

"I’m looking forward to what will be a very special night for us both. I’m sure the fans will make this a memorable occasion and help Wayne to raise a lot of money to help support vulnerable children."

Rooney joined United from Everton in 2004 and the club captain has vowed to end his career at Old Trafford.

"For me, there could not be a more special testimonial match. Manchester United and Everton are the only clubs I have played for as a professional footballer. I am happy to say now that, whatever may happen in the future, I will never play for another Premier League club," he said.

"I owe United and Everton everything for giving me my footballing opportunities. Through The Wayne Rooney Foundation I want to put something back and, at the same time, say a heartfelt thanks to everyone at these great clubs who ever helped me in my career.

"Everton and United, along with my family, gave me the support and opportunity to help me achieve my goals and dreams. Having a young family of my own makes me realise it’s vital that every child gets the opportunity to grow up surrounded by love and support to give them a chance of fulfilling their potential.

"I hope The Wayne Rooney Foundation and its charity partners can improve and inspire the lives of children disadvantaged by family breakdown, abuse, health issues or lack of educational opportunities."

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