Champions League

Rooney's form a concern

2015-08-17 18:30
Wayne Rooney (Getty)

Manchester - Manchester United will want more than just a first-leg lead from its Champions League playoff against Bruges on Tuesday.

A goal from Wayne Rooney would be very welcome, too.

Rooney's form is the main concern in an otherwise solid start to the season from United, which has won both of its opening games in the Premier League by 1-0 scorelines.

The England captain is United's No. 1 striker this season following the offseason departures of Robin van Persie and Radamel Falcao, yet he hasn't scored in the last eight games for his club and has only attempted one shot from open play this season.

Against Aston Villa on Friday, Rooney only touched the ball once in the penalty area all game.

Rooney should be given another chance to end his barren streak when Bruges visits Old Trafford for what might be the biggest mismatch of the 10 playoff matches. Each winning side over two legs enters the group stage starting next month, which will earn those clubs €12 million just for advancing — as well as €2 million for winning the playoff.

Bruges was the Belgian league's runner-up last season and is in third place after four games of the new season. It was a European Cup runner-up to Liverpool in 1978 and a Europa League quarterfinalist last season.

Seeking to return to the main draw of the Champions League after a year's absence, United should prove to be too much for the Belgian visitors.

Crucially, the 20-time English champions look more assured defensively with a midfield barrier of Michael Carrick and new signing Morgan Schneiderlin offering better protection, while Louis van Gaal's high pressing game is proving difficult for opponents. Van Gaal also has the option in midfield of Germany captain Bastian Schweinsteiger, who could be handed his first competitive start.

The Dutch coach will want to see more from his attack, with Netherlands forward Memphis Depay yet to justify his billing as potentially the next Cristiano Ronaldo at Old Trafford. It may only be when Rooney finds his form that Depay will prosper.

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Fixtures
Tuesday, 26 November 2019
Lokomotiv Moscow v Bayer Leverkusen, Lokomotiv Stadium 19:55
Galatasaray v Club Brugge, Turk Telekom Arena 19:55
Juventus v Atletico Madrid, Allianz Stadium 22:00
Atalanta v Dinamo Zagreb, Atleti Azzurri d'Italia 22:00
Manchester City v Shakhtar Donetsk, Etihad Stadium 22:00
Real Madrid v Paris SG, Santiago Bernabeu 22:00
Red Star Belgrade v Bayern Munchen, Stadion Rajko Mitic 22:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Olympiacos, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium 22:00
Wednesday, 27 November 2019
Valencia v Chelsea, Mestalla 19:55
Zenit St. Petersburg v Lyon, Saint Petersburg Stadium 19:55
Liverpool v Napoli, Anfield 22:00
Barcelona v Borussia Dortmund, Camp Nou 22:00
Slavia Prague v Inter Milan, Eden Arena 22:00
Genk v Red Bull Salzburg, Luminus Arena 22:00
RB Leipzig v Benfica, Red Bull Arena 22:00
Lille v Ajax, Stade Pierre-Mauroy 22:00
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Red Bull Salzburg v Liverpool, Red Bull Arena 19:55
Napoli v Genk, San Paolo 19:55
Ajax v Valencia, Amsterdam ArenA 22:00
Benfica v Zenit St. Petersburg, da Luz 22:00
Lyon v RB Leipzig, Groupama Stadium 22:00
Inter Milan v Barcelona, San Siro 22:00
Borussia Dortmund v Slavia Prague, Signal Iduna Park 22:00
Chelsea v Lille, Stamford Bridge 22:00
Wednesday, 11 December 2019
Dinamo Zagreb v Manchester City, Maksimir Stadium 19:55
Shakhtar Donetsk v Atalanta, Metalist Stadium 19:55
Bayern Munchen v Tottenham Hotspur, Allianz Arena 22:00
Bayer Leverkusen v Juventus, BayArena 22:00
Club Brugge v Real Madrid, Jan Breydel Stadion 22:00
Olympiacos v Red Star Belgrade, Karaiskakis Stadium 22:00
Paris SG v Galatasaray, Parc des Princes 22:00
Atletico Madrid v Lokomotiv Moscow, Wanda Metropolitano 22:00
Saturday, 30 May 2020
TBA v TBA, Ataturk Olympic Stadium 02:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will emerge victorious in this season's Champions League?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.