Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson yesterday dismissed suggestions Wayne Rooney could leave the club in the summer after being left out against Real Madrid in midweek.
Ferguson preferred Danny Welbeck to Rooney, 27, for the Champions League last 16 second leg at Old Trafford and Rooney only made it on to the field as a late substitute in the 2-1 defeat.
The United manager commented before the match that Rooney “needs games” and the England striker’s omission led to questions over his United future.
Reports suggested that Rooney, who joined United from Everton in 2004, could leave as soon as this summer. But Ferguson has moved to quash any suggestion that Rooney will be departing and insists the striker understood his reasons for selecting Welbeck to block the influence of Real Madrid’s Xabi Alonso.
He also categorically insisted that Rooney will be at Old Trafford next season and will feature in the FA Cup quarter-final against Chelsea tomorrow.
Ferguson said: “There’s absolutely no problem. He will be here next year, you have my word on that. There are no issues at all with the player. He’ll be involved on Sunday, no doubt about that.
“There’s absolutely no issue between Wayne Rooney and I. To suggest we don’t talk on the training ground is absolute nonsense and he understood the reasons for not playing him were completely tactical and I think we were right. “You don’t always get it right but I think we got it right. Welbeck is the best player we have in terms of operating in a double role.”