Wayne Rooney injury issue not for public debate, insists Manchester United boss

15 October 2010 02:25
Sir Alex Ferguson refused to be drawn into a public debate over Wayne Rooney's fitness ahead of the striker's expected return for Manchester United against West Bromwich Albion.

Rooney has missed United's last two games against Valencia and Sunderland with Ferguson citing an ankle injury for the star's absence a claim the England star denied.

The 24-year-old told reporters after Tuesday's 0-0 Euro 2012 qualifier draw against Montenegro at Wembley that he has been fit all season, raising question marks over his relationship with Ferguson

No debate: Rooney is expected to return for Manchester United against West Brom at Old Trafford

Rooney is expected to play at Old Trafford this weekend, Ferguson declined to offer any cast-iron assurances sidestepping the subject of any issues between the pair.

'It is water off a duck's back to me,' Ferguson told Manchester station Key103.

'I don't know where all these things come from. The boy is always in the spotlight and being addressed by the press. It is important how you handle it in my experience.

'But it just runs off me. It doesn't mean anything.'

Owen Hargreaves, meanwhile, is not in contention to face the Baggies.

The midfielder's knee surgeon Dr Richard Steadman suggested earlier this week the England international was going to play, ending months of torment on the sidelines.

Hargreaves is suffering from a minor calf complaint and Ferguson is clearly unimpressed with Steadman's interjection.

Not ready: Midfielder Owen Hargreaves is still injured, insists Ferguson

'Owen is not ready,' said Ferguson. 'He is injured. He has missed training for the last few days.

'We are having difficult with the doctor in Colorado coming out with statements that are not accurate.

'It is not fair to the player for him to say Owen is going to be playing tomorrow.

'It is ridiculous. I pick the team and I have been doing it for quite a while.

'We have this small interference, which is causing some confusion. He is out with a calf injury.'

Ready to return: Veteran Giggs has handed Ferguson a selection boost

At the start of nine games in 29 days, Ryan Giggs is ready to return from a hamstring injury to give Ferguson a few more options, although a combination of the new Tuesday international dates and a larger than expected number of players in training over the past couple of weeks has provided United with some valuable preparation time.

'It is unusual to have so many players during an international break but it is very welcome,' said Ferguson.

Dimitar Berbatov has retired, Patrice Evra is still suspended by France. The Da Silva brothers were here and Gabriel Obertan, plus the older lads who have also retired, so we had quite a few.

'And with a Tuesday match as well it means we have an extra day to get the players prepared.'

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Source: Daily_Mail