Rooney set for more first-team minutes

Wayne Rooney's reintroduction to the Manchester United first team after two months on the sideline will continue this coming Saturday against Aston Villa.

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has confirmed in an interview with Manutd.com that Rooney will play a bigger role in Satuday's clash against Villa than he did in their midweek FA Cup quarter-final clash with West Ham.

"He always wants to play. Yes, I think he shall receive more minutes but it’s always dependable on the game," the embattled Dutchman said about Rooney, who featured for all of four minutes against the Hammers on Wednesday.

"You cannot say in advance that I give you 20 minutes or something like that; when it’s possible, I shall do that because we need Wayne in the team," he added, no doubt referring to his side's lack of experience up front. 

United have come under some criticism following the poor display of their forwards against Tottenham last weekend, and the returning Rooney will go a long way towards rectifying this worrying issue.

In other injury news, Van Gaal has confirmed that Ander Herrera probably won't feature against the already-relegated Villa, while German midfielder Bastiaan Schweinsteiger is unlikely to play again this season.

"I don’t think Schweinsteiger shall play this season – I think, next season, he is prepared," Van Gaal said. "Maybe he is prepared for the European Championship, I cannot predict. It is possible, but then that is also in our favour because then he is fit for the new competition."

United are currently fifth in the Premier League table, four points adrift of bitter rivals Manchester City.

Comments