After Wayne Rooney unexpectedly started yesterday, David Moyes came in for some criticism for putting the number 10 in the starting line-up just four days after England played against Ukraine. First of all this is silly as a lot can happen in four days, and I wonder if the same lot will be criticising Daniel Sturridge if he plays for Liverpool on Monday night. I doubt it.
Rooney put in an excellent performance and was my personal Man of the Match. He was going in for headers, spraying passes around, and working hard. Best of all, his heart looked in it. Best of all he’ll be fit for the Manchester derby next weekend.
Moyes admitted that his participation in the game was in doubt until Friday, but opted to go with the England international:
“It was a difficult decision. We were going to see how he felt with it, but until Friday we hadn’t even got it. In my mind he’s been training great, so I felt that if he could wear it then we would try and get him out [for Saturday’s game].”
“Because of his lack of match practice, I felt if I could get him 90 minutes it would go a long way towards the overall goal of getting him match sharpness and match fitness.
“He looks fine. He went for a couple of headers as well with it. It looked as if he didn’t feel any problem protecting it, but as I’m sure you’ve all seen, it’s a really bad cut he had.”
It really is excellent to see Rooney so committed like that. I just hope he can now stay injury-free and put in performances like that week-in week-out.