Wayne Rooney has taken some time out to mull over his future as he enjoyed a break in Barbados with his family.
The Manchester United star is expected to quit Old Trafford this summer, with clubs from at home and abroad chasing his signature.
However, Rooney took some downtime to relax in the sun with his wife, Coleen, and their three children.
The 31-year-old soaked up the rays on the beach while enjoying a kickabout with his son, Kai.
Rooney also posed for a family photo on the sand as he let his hair down following United’s Europa League final win in Stockholm last week.
Stoke are ready to take an amazing gamble on signing Rooney — with the backing of their sponsors Bet365.
The Potters ‘ manager Mark Hughes is behind the move to try to tempt the England international to ignore offers from China and the USA and stay in the Premier League with the Midlands club.
It’s an ambitious project, but Bet365 comfortably have the financial clout to assemble a £45million package to tempt Rooney.
The UK-based online gambling company was founded by Stoke’s chairman Peter Coates and is one of the major players in the betting industry with 20 million customers in 200 countries.
They could easily afford to bankroll a Rooney move and exploit the star’s commercial appeal through that worldwide fanbase.
But they may have problems persuading the 31-year old star to buy into their project — he insisted after the Europa League final win over Ajax on Wednesday that he won’t play for any Premier League sides other than United and Everton.
Although Rooney has been heavily linked with a return to his boyhood club there has been no approach from Goodison Park to United for the record-breaking star, who has one year left on his £300,000-a-week contract plus the option of a further year.
Any move to another domestic club would have financial complexities if United force the issue to cut Rooney loose.
He would be due a minimum £15million in wages plus whatever he would be legally due if the option for the extra year is on his side rather than United’s.
That’s why boss Jose Mourinho has thrown the ball into Rooney’s court, saying it’s his decision whether he stays at the club.
If he stayed, Rooney could see out his contract but would have to accept, with United poised to hit the transfer market hard this summer, that he would be even more of a bit-part player next season than he was in this one.
Those who know Rooney well say that’s not an option for the proud star, who believes he still has plenty left to offer at the top level.
United would also be inclined to hold out for a transfer fee if he stayed in the Premier League – and that could be up to the £20million they would demand if he opts to go to the Chinese Super League.
After his decade-plus of service at Old Trafford, during which time he’s become the club’s all-time goal-scorer, United may simply agree to waive any fee — effectively giving him a free transfer, in return for not paying up the remainder of his contract.
Stoke’s interest is genuine and would mean Rooney can stay close to his Merseyside roots.
It’s an intriguing twist to a story that will reach a conclusion later this summer, with Rooney claiming he will discuss all his options on a family holiday with wife Coleen and their three sons before making a decision.