Wayne Rooney has backed Liverpool’s bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games ©Liverpool 2022

England’s all-time leading goalscorer Wayne Rooney has joined his boyhood club Everton in backing Liverpool’s bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The 31-year-old started his career with the Liverpool-based club before moving to Manchester United in 2004.

He went on to win the Premier League title five times, FA Cup, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, three League Cups and FIFA Club World Cup at United.

In September 2015, Rooney broke Sir Bobby Charlton's England goal scoring record, netting his 50th international goal from a penalty in a Euro 2016 qualifying match against Switzerland.

In January, Rooney also surpassed Sir Bobby to become the outright leading scorer for Manchester United after scoring his 250th goal for the club.

Rooney returned to Everton earlier this summer and believes his home city is the perfect host for such an important international sporting event.

"I’m proud to be in a position to back our city’s bid to host the Commonwealth Games in 2022 and I have no doubt that Liverpool would be the perfect host city," he said.

"People’s passion for football within the city is recognised around the world but we also have a rich sporting tradition in the boxing ring, on our golf courses which have staged Open Championships, in athletics and gymnastics and, of course, Liverpool stages the jewel in the crown of National Hunt horse racing every year at Aintree, the Grand National.

"Bringing the Commonwealth Games to the city would be fantastic and fitting, showcasing again to the world what a great city Liverpool is and I support the bid wholeheartedly."

The centrepiece of Liverpool's campaign is the riverside regeneration of the city's Bramley-Moore Dock, the proposed site for a new stadium for Rooney's Everton.

A temporary athletics track would be laid during the Games and a floating swimming pool is another key part of Liverpool's bid.

The 50 metre pool structure, with seating for 5,000 spectators, would be built on the water near Albert Dock.

Everton's current stadium Goodison Park would be the venue for boxing while archery would be hosted at Aintree Racecourse.

Wayne Rooney returned to Everton from Manchester United this summer ©Getty Images
Wayne Rooney returned to Everton from Manchester United this summer ©Getty Images

"I am really delighted Wayne has shown his support for the Liverpool Bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games," added Liverpool 2022 chair Brian Barwick.

"As a world-famous record-breaking footballer Wayne has proved to be a winner throughout his career and as a true Scouser his endorsement for the Bid is very special.

"Everton Football Club's support for the Bid has been simply outstanding, their commitment fantastic – yet another world-famous Merseyside sporting institution getting behind the Liverpool 2022 Commonwealth Games Bid."

Rooney's support follows the backing given by former England team-mate Steven Gerrard earlier this week.

Gerrard, one of Liverpool Football Club's all-time greats having represented the Reds more than 700 times between 1998 and 2015, said on Wednesday (August 9) that he believes it would be "fantastic" if the city hosts the Commonwealth Games in 2022.

If successful with their bid, Liverpool's home ground of Anfield would host rugby sevens.

Liverpool, named this week by ESPN as the number one sporting city in the United Kingdom, is battling against Birmingham to win the English nomination for the 2022 race.

A decision is due to be made by Commonwealth Games England next month with both entrants hoping to replace South African city Durban - stripped of the hosting rights due to a lack of financial guarantees.

England faces competition to replace Durban from Canada and Malaysia, with potential bids from Victoria and Kuala Lumpur in the pipeline.