McClaren knows that just because Rooney was on the bench for the game against Real on Tuesday, does not mean that there is any need to panic about him leaving the club, although nearly all of the national newspapers are trying to work fans into a frenzy.
But McLaren knows Ferguson well as he was his assistant between 1999 and 2001 and he is convinced that the Rooney decision was part of a long term plan worked out for the game.
He told Sky Sports News: "It is premature and obviously stirred up by the media. Everyone is looking for controversy and some like to find it in the selection Sir Alex made."
He added: "But there are many good players at Manchester United. One player is not bigger than the football club - that is Sir Alex's mantra, that has always been his saying.
"He picked a team on Tuesday to beat Real Madrid and he very nearly succeeded.
"I wouldn't say he (Rooney) was dropped. I would say this was well planned, weeks and weeks ahead. Wayne Rooney would have known this decision was coming.
Source: United Mad