Belfast Telegraph

Monday 21 April 2014

Rooney enjoying competition

Wayne Rooney says competition for starting places will bring the best out of United's forwards

Wayne Rooney believes the competition for striking berths can only be a good thing for Manchester United.

Now Rooney has recovered from the gashed thigh he suffered against Fulham last month, United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has five top international forwards to select from ahead of the Barclays Premier League encounter with Tottenham.

"There is a lot of competition up front, but that is great for the squad," said Rooney. "The manager will rotate when he feels it is necessary."

It says something that perceived first-choice pairing Rooney and Robin van Persie have yet to start a game together this season, yet still United have managed to move their way into second spot, just behind early pace-setters Chelsea.

However, with a tricky Capital One Cup tie against Newcastle already negotiated, a Champions League encounter with CFR Cluj to come on Tuesday before a Premier League rematch with the Magpies next Sunday, Rooney realises there is plenty of work for everyone.

"There are a lot of games throughout the season. It means we can get a rest here and there to make sure we are ready for the big games towards the end," he added.

After being dropped against Fulham, then getting trodden on by Hugo Rodallega when he was finally introduced, it feels like the season is starting again.

"It does feel like the start of my season," he said. "It was a freak injury and whilst it wasn't too bad, I had to be careful when I came back training and in games because it could open up again."

Without a win at Old Trafford since 1989, Tottenham are the kind of team United usually relish hosting. Rooney has also bagged seven goals against the north London outfit, which gives him hope he will have a good day.

"We always seem to do well against Tottenham," he said. "Hopefully that will continue."