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» Fancy a run in defence, Wayne? Rooney brushes off illness to launch into tackle on Vidic during United training
Fancy a run in defence, Wayne? Rooney brushes off illness to launch into tackle on Vidic during United training
Wayne Rooney has had to live a little bit in the shadow of Robin van Persie this season. And now it seems the Manchester United star is considering a stint in defence to claim back his place as the darling of Old Trafford.
Rooney has scored 13 goals in all competitions this season, 10 fewer than summer signing Van Persie, and in training today was seen throwing himself into tackles that would make team-mate Nemanja Vidic jealous.
Firm but fair: Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was all action in training on Friday as he dived at the feet of Serbia defender Nemanja Vidic
The towering Serb was even on the receiving end of one well-timed sliding challenge.
Rooney's attitude was especially commendable considering he is likely to miss Saturday's match with QPR at Loftus Road having sat out Monday's FA Cup defeat of Reading with a sinus problem.
His manager Sir Alex Ferguson said on Friday: 'He came in for the first time yesterday and the medical people are dealing with him.
'He has been on medicine and hopefully he will start training today, but I wouldn't think he would be available on Saturday.'
Heads up: Rooney has missed some training this week due to illness but was full of beans in training, especially when he went in for the ball with Patrice Evra
If Ferguson's assessment is correct, it would mean Rooney will have missed two-and-a-half weeks of action by the time United are next due to play, against Norwich at Old Trafford on March 2, just three days before the second leg of their Champions League encounter with Real Madrid.
As Ferguson has repeatedly said Rooney needs matches to maintain his fitness, it may provide the United boss with an unwanted selection dilemma in addition to that surrounding Phil Jones, who only has an 'outside chance' of being fit after suffering an ankle injury on Monday.
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