The extracts on this page are taken from selected national newspapers. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United.
One man can stop the Kop
You expect Alex Ferguson might have made two telephone calls on Saturday night. One to have had a bit of a laugh with his son Darren about his red card for, believe it or not, questioning a refereeing decision. The other phone call would have been to Wayne Rooney after one of the most mature performances the young England star has ever produced for his country. At a time when striker Rooney was under the most intense spotlight, he showed he doesn’t have to play on the edge to be in a class of his own. Best of all for the Manchester United manager was the conclusion that if Rooney can carry England as he did at Wembley, then he can do the same with his club. And that when hostilities resume next weekend, the Scouser will be the deciding factor when it comes to the championship race. That he can be the man who finally ends Liverpool’s hopes of a first title in 19 years. All the talk had been about United’s stunning collapse, the fall-out between Rooney and his manager and his subsequent sending off at Fulham. But here we have a player who does not concern himself with matters like these. Responsibility, leadership, an example to everyone on the pitch and all the young kids in the crowd. He CAN do it. And this is exactly what Ferguson needs above everything else when Rooney returns to Old Trafford.
Steven Howard, The Sun
Ben Foster made his second England appearance as a substitute against Slovakia. The United goalkeeper admits he is coming to a crossroads, saying: “Regular first-team football is a must. It’s going to be a big season for me next year.”
The Daily Mirror claims United will almost certainly sign Wigan winger Luis Antonio Valencia for £17million in the summer, allowing the Latics to sign Ecuadorian striker Cristian Benitez.