Rooney future on Fergie agenda

  • Last Updated: March 8 2013, 9:51 GMT

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is likely to face questions about Wayne Rooney's future when he addresses the media this morning.

Wayne Rooney: Questions about Manchester United future
Wayne Rooney: Questions about Manchester United future

Wayne Rooney

10. Wayne Rooney

Title Number
Appearances 5 (1)
Goals 2
Assists 1
Yellows 0
Reds 0
*Current Season

Ferguson's decision to omit the England star from his starting line-up to face Real Madrid in the Champions League in midweek has sparked suggestions the 27-year-old could leave Old Trafford.

Ferguson has not yet spoken on the matter after failing to give TV interviews or attend the press conference after Tuesday's controversial 2-1 loss to the Spanish giants in a match that turned on Nani's red card.

There have been suggestions that Rooney's fitness and attitude have been an issue and that the contract wrangle involving the former Everton man in 2010 remains a sore point.

But all that is speculation with neither United nor Rooney's representatives having commented.

Statistics show Rooney remains a highly effective figure having contributed to 24 goals in 26 Premier League or Champions League appearances this season in terms of scoring himself (12 goals) or providing the assist (12).

Rooney's former England manager Steve McClaren believes too much has been read into Rooney's substitute role and expects him to remain a key figure at United.

McClaren, who also worked as Ferguson's assistant from 1999-2001, told Sky Sports News: "People get a perception of a player on the field and say he is not this or that.

"But if the stats are that - is he doing his job, is he scoring, is he assisting - as long as he is doing that he will always be a Manchester United player."

Although United were beaten by Real, they were in control of the game until winger Nani was sent off in contentious circumstances just before the hour.

McClaren felt Ferguson got his tactics right and Rooney could have no comeback on that front.

He said: "He has got many good players and he picks a team on form, fitness and on doing the job on the night.

"On the night Wayne Rooney would have sat on the bench and had no complaints about the tactics.

"He won't be happy and Sir Alex does not expect his players to be happy about not playing.

"What he is looking for, for the team, is a reaction from Wayne Rooney, and no better place to start than at Old Trafford on Sunday."

United face Chelsea in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, a match which Ferguson's latest press conference was arranged to preview.

But after failing to fulfil media duties on Tuesday - for which Ferguson is facing a UEFA charge - the Scot is also likely to be questioned about the Champions League exit.


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