SOCCER

Rooney issues rallying cry to United faithful ahead of Swansea clash

MANCHESTER —

Wayne Rooney has called on Manchester United’s fans to remain behind the team as they look to end a three-game losing streak against Swansea on Saturday.

The Premier League champions lost to Tottenham Hotspur on New Year’s Day and that result was followed by an FA Cup exit at Swansea before more cup misery came in the shape of a 2-1 reverse in the first leg of their League Cup semi-final with Sunderland.

United now lie 11 points behind Premier League leaders Arsenal heading into this weekend’s fixtures, with their hopes of finishing in the top four and so qualifying for next season’s Champions League under severe threat.

United’s supporters have also watched their team lose four times already in the Premier League at Old Trafford this season, the defeats adding to the pressure manager David Moyes already faced in succeeding the retired Alex Ferguson.

But Rooney, battling to be fit to face Swansea after missing the last two games with an abductor problem, urged fans to remain loyal to both the team and Moyes.

“The fans’ support is very important. The fans have been great here, especially now when we are not in the best of form and we have lost the last few games,” he said.

“We need them to support us through this time,” the England striker added.

“We will get stronger and we will get better. The fans are vital in being patient with us and letting us try to get there. I am sure we will.”

It is not clear if Robin van Persie will be fit to return to action against the Swans.

The Dutch forward has been out for a month with a thigh strain and media reports in Britain suggested he has returned to training but Moyes is expected to provide an update on his fitness on Friday.

Jonny Evans was taken off in the midweek defeat by Sunderland with a back problem and it is not clear if he will be able to feature while Rio Ferdinand, Nani and Marouane Fellaini are all sidelined.

Swansea will be without wingers Pablo Hernandez and Roland Lamah who have hamstring and abductor problems respectively, while goalkeeper Michael Vorm is not ready to return yet from a knee operation.

And after sending United out of the FA Cup last weekend with their first-ever win at Old Trafford, Swansea boss Michael Laudrup said there was no reason they couldn’t do it again.

“In many recent games we played with a lot of confidence but just needed the win and sometimes that win comes when you least expect it,” he explained.

“Maybe others didn’t expect us to win at Old Trafford but we believed and we maybe had a bit of luck scoring in the last minute,” the Denmark football great added.

“Our aim is to do it again and we know it’s possible because we have confidence, but on the other hand we know it is more difficult than last time because of the circumstances and with United losing at Sunderland.

“We will expect them to come out and want to go at us and want to win because they have to win this game.

“So we have to be ready for a very tough game because I don’t think the United players will like what they hear about the negative record at the moment.”

(c) 2014 AFP

  • -4

    USNinJapan2

    But Rooney, battling to be fit to face Swansea after missing the last two games with an abductor problem, urged fans to remain loyal to both the team and Moyes.

    YES, for the team but NO for Moyes. Sorry but I don't think anyone thought it would be quite this bad at this point in the season and it's obvious to even a layman like me that Moyes is woefully out of his depth and no amount of time will help. I don't believe he is capable of rising to United's level/expectations, and giving him more time will only bring the level of the club down to him. We need to admit that we made a mistake with Moyes and make the most efficient and effective change, which isn't to spend stupid amounts of money on new January signings (not that any great player will want to join United right now and run the risk of not being CL eligible next year) but to fire the manager, who IS the problem not the players IMO, and make the most of what's remains of the season (and possibly longer) with a capable interim manager. If it was up to me I'd replace Moyes with Gary Neville immediately and let him galvanize the dressing room and reinstate United's free-flowing attacking play. If anyone can it would be Gaz and I believe one phone call from Sir Alex is all it would take for him to take the job.

  • 0

    SimondB

    Have to agree the problem is Moyes. MU play like they don't have a clue what the game plan is, if in fact there is one. But it really has been a series of disasters since Moyes took over. Missed out on all their transfer targets, one because they got the paperwork wrong. Dismissed all the backroom staff which had been integral to the MU success for the last 15 years. Brought Fellani who is good at taking a ball on his chest but not much else. Sorry, but David - blame the ref - Moyes is way out of his depth. And look how Everton have blossomed since he left.

  • 1

    lucabrasi

    @US

    Och, man, have a bit of patience...the guy's been in the hardest job in British football for less than a year and you're already calling for his head. He'll sort things out eventually. And if not, we've got a job of a slightly different nature for him down at Coventry....

  • 2

    Jimizo

    United won the title with the third best squad last season. Problems at City and Chelsea ( both of whom had better squads ), the goals of van Persie and the brilliance of Ferguson saw United champions. This season City and Chelsea have strengthened under good managers and van Persie's injury problems have returned. Arsenal, Liverpool, Spurs and Everton have all added quality to their squads while Moyes overpaid for Fellaini ( thanks for the cash Moysie ). That squad needs major surgery. Ferdinand, Giggs and Vidic are past it, Cleverley is becoming the target of the boo boys, Welbeck isn't Man U quality and van Persie isn't getting any younger and seems to be going back to his old habits of spending half the season in the treatment room. I doubt any manager other than Ferguson could make that squad top four material and Moyes will have to spend some serious cash on world-class talent to make them contenders again. As for the football they play, that's Moyes. I've said before how he turned Everton around and we loved him for it but even the most biased Evertonian wouldn't have said we played good football. It seems conservatism is in his make up.

  • -1

    falseflagsteve

    I knew that manure's legion of foreign "fans" would be bawling about this already. I mean why support a team that is not guaranteed to win anything?

    Not to worry, many will soon be supporting Arsenal or possibly Chelsea, what happened to all the Toon and Blackburn fans from the 90's? ROFL!

    This is good news though, maybe the non stop spending and celeb players is not getting the success they think they are entitles to. Hopefully it gets to a stage where decent teams with good management can compete without having a Billionaire from half way across the world funding them as their play thing. Personally i find Championship and League 1 more exciting than the premier league.

  • -1

    Jimizo

    @USN It is worth remembering that Moyes was Ferguson's chosen successor. Gary Neville certainly has the love of the Man U fans but has no track record or experience as a manager. The last thing Man U need now is a gamble on an unproven manager. As I said, big money needs to be spent at Old Trafford and it's probably better to write this season off and wait until the summer to bring in a top-class manager who you can trust to spend it wisely. Man U can probably afford to spend a season outside the CL but I doubt they could afford two.

  • 0

    Tamarama

    US and SimonB

    Sorry but I don't think anyone thought it would be quite this bad at this point in the season

    Come on men, seriously? United are currently 7th, 10 points off the lead, still likely to reach the League Cup final. How about a bit of resilience?

    You simply can't just replace a guy like Alex Ferguson and carry on winning everything. It doesn't happen. AF was a freak. Look at what he did with Aberdeen before he went to United, incredible feats. And you must remember it subsequently took 8 years to win a title at United. Moyes is a very good manager, but he needs time, and United fans need to accept reality without Alex Ferguson.

    B

  • 0

    Saxon Salute

    Man U were a footballing goliath until they met their David. In all fairness though, Moyes did not inherit a brilliant young squad of hungry players. Sir Alex should have strengthened MU over the last two seasons, but he didn't. Moyes does not have a squad that can compete with Man City or Chelsea, neither does he have the funds to compete with several others. MU was a great side due to the depth and strength of their squad, for which Ferguson deserves a lot of credit. But when Ferguson came in and had to rebuild, he didn't get instant success either. Moyes deserves a good chance and some real money to spend.

Login to leave a comment

OR
  •  Burmese Sales Staff

    Burmese Sales Staff
    Autocom Japan (オートコムジャパン株式会社)、Kanagawa
    Salary: ¥350,000 ~ ¥1.0M / Month Commission Based
  • Mongolian Sales Staff

    Mongolian Sales Staff
    Autocom Japan (オートコムジャパン株式会社)、Kanagawa
    Salary: ¥350,000 ~ ¥1.0M / Month Commission Based
  • GooglePlay Partner Operations Manager <English-Japanese Bilingual>

    GooglePlay Partner Operations Manager
    Link Marketing Inc. - 株式会社リンク・マーケティング、Tokyo
    Salary: ¥250,000 ~ ¥350,000 / Month
  • GooglePlay Partner Operations Manager <English-Thai Bilingual>

    GooglePlay Partner Operations Manager
    Link Marketing Inc. - 株式会社リンク・マーケティング、Tokyo
    Salary: ¥250,000 ~ ¥350,000 / Month
  • Technical Support Engineer

    Technical Support Engineer
    株式会社 日本イントリピッド・コントロール・システムズ、Kanagawa
    Salary: ¥3.5M ~ ¥4.5M / Year Negotiable

More in Sports

View all

View all