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Mourinho stands by axed Rooney as Man Utd rout Leicester

Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Jose Mourinho insists Wayne Rooney can still be a key figure for Manchester United despite dropping the England striker for Saturday’s 4-1 win against Leicester.

Mourinho left Rooney on the bench after a series of underwhelming performances from the United captain and he wasn’t missed as the Premier League champions were crushed at Old Trafford.

Juan Mata, who stepped into Rooney’s number 10 role, was among the scorers, but United manager Mourinho is adamant his axed star remains an important member of the team and is not sulking about the decision to leave him out.

“Wayne Rooney is a big player for me, United and this country. He is my man, I trust him completely. He is happy,” Mourinho told Sky Sports after Rooney was limited to a seven-minute substitute appearance at the end of the second half.

After United were beaten in their previous two league games, Mourinho couldn’t afford his Rooney gamble to backfire and he delighted with the way his team blitzed Leicester with a four-goal first half.

“It was a very good performance and result. It is not easy against them and not easy to win in the style that we did,” Mourinho said.

“Today we had intensity, movement and dynamism. To be back home and beat the champions is good. Last season we couldn’t beat them and this season we have beaten them twice already.

“We have lost six points in the Premier League. We have four victories which is really important.

“Today it is about the security and the happiness of the fans, I don’t know when the last time that they had such a scoreline at half time.”


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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Timbo59

    September 24, 2016 at 1:04 pm

    One of these days I’m going to figure out why the likes of Mourhino, LVG and Moyes (and a great many of the fan base) couldn’t see the wood for the trees where Rooney is concerned when it’s been bleeding obvious for years that he’s been an anchor round United’s neck, even more so as his increasing lack of pace has taken away the one string to his bow that always stood him in such good stead in his younger days, namely his ability to make up for his poor technical skills by being able to outpace defenders on the counterattack. He has always been so limited that the rest of the team has had to sacrifice their own game to paper over his weaknesses and pander to his few strengths, essentially meaning that by and large most of the work for his goals has always been performed by others and largely handed to him on a plate – how often can you recall Rooney making any goals for himself by taking on defenders – and winning? Great players, like Maradona or Cruyff make others around them better. Rooney has always been the dead opposite, an individual who sucked all the best from those around him, meaning that the whole has always suffered. Look how much better United played today without his presence dragging the team down. Nothing would have pleased me more had United sold him off after Fergie’s reign came to an end – at least the Scot finally saw the light in his final season by largely benching Rooney. His successors didn’t get the hint. One can only hope that this game against Leicester spells the end to Rooney’s time with United as a first choice team member. Keep him around as a sub, then invite him to leave at season’s end.

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