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Rooney backed to hit top form

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has backed Wayne Rooney to reach his top form in time for Sunday's derby.

Last Updated: 06/12/12 at 10:26 Post Comment

Wayne Rooney: Backing by Ferguson to fire on all cylinders in derby

Wayne Rooney: Backing by Ferguson to fire on all cylinders in derby

Rooney was the only player to retain his place from last weekend's win at Reading as Manchester United ended their UEFA Champions League group stage campaign with a 1-0 defeat by CFR Cluj at Old Trafford, the only goal coming from Luis Alberto early in the second half.

But the 27-year-old was not being punished.

Instead Ferguson feels it was an essential step towards Rooney regaining full fitness following his recent absence with tonsillitis ahead of Sunday's short trip to the Etihad Stadium.

"Wayne has another 90 minutes under his belt and hopefully by Sunday he is in real top form," said the manager.

"He is approaching that now but Sunday will be a different kettle of fish altogether."

Changes

Ferguson has confirmed he will make wholesale changes on Sunday, which means a return to the players he accused of comical defending at the Madejski Stadium.

For, whilst the boss was satisfied with the combined efforts of Jones, Smalling, Scott Wootton and Alex Buttner on Wednesday night, it is the likes of Rio Ferdinand and Patrice Evra on whom United will be relying this Sunday.

"The defence did their job quite well," said Ferguson. "I was pleased at the commitment and the composure was very good.

"But that doesn't solve the issue of defending. That was the future.

"On Sunday, the experienced players have to get their act together. It is as simple as that."

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xcellent! Not sure if he is any good as a manager (never thought about it) but the 'headbutt in the technical area' and what he said to Pelligrini were just brilliant, it was as if he was trying to recreate the end of the Alan Partridge Xmas special when Alan punched a man in a wheelchair and verbally abused Tony Heirs.

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think you spelt Inter Milan wrong in your headline.

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e might be on a hiding to nothing, but I cannae feel any sympathy- You want to know why? Shakira. That's why.

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