Papers: Ruud backs Rooney
Ruud backs Roo
Wayne Rooney’s miserable campaign last night suffered another major setback after he was pulled out of Manchester United’s side to face Valencia in the Champions League. Rooney will stay behind for treatment to a damaged ankle when Sir Alex Ferguson’s side flies to Spain for Wednesday's clash. The England striker was subbed during United’s disappointing 2-2 draw at Bolton on Sunday. He was pictured with an ice pack protecting the ankle, but Ferguson said he expected Rooney to be fit for midweek. Yet the United boss last night delivered a gloomy update on the injury. It raises more questions about Rooney, who’s cut a frustrated figure lately and has found the net just once for United this season. Ferguson claimed before the weekend that the player was struggling under the intense media glare. Rooney has endured a difficult campaign so far following allegations over his private life. However he has been backed to shrug off his off-field problems and rediscover his best form by former team-mate Ruud Van Nistelrooy. The Dutchman told Sky: “The players I played with at United were always focused and they still are. He can handle it. He has proved it.”Neil Johnston, Daily Star
Elsewhere, Nemanja Vidic admits United desperately need to tighten up at the back after conceding nine goals in just six Premier League games. The Reds skipper is quoted in the Daily Express: “It’s a big concern conceding so many goals, especially away from home. We have to be much better in Spain than we were at Bolton."
The DailyMail reports Sir Alex Ferguson has compiled a personal scouting report on Athletico Madrid goalkeeper David De Gea and is preparing a £12m raid for the Dutchman in the January transfer window. The boss believes De Gea can be the long-term successor to Edwin van der Sar.