Goal of the Day: Rooney's at the double

Thursday 14 November 2019 10:46

Our chosen 'Goal of the Day' comes from 2004/05, when Wayne Rooney helped kickstart the Reds' campaign...

Date: 14 November 2004, St James' Park, Premier League

Background: With new signing Wayne Rooney absent through injury until the end of September, United experienced an inconsistent start to the campaign, drawing five of our opening nine Premier League games. The 2-0 win at Old Trafford, which ended Arsenal’s 49-game unbeaten run, was followed by defeat at Portsmouth and a stalemate in the Manchester derby, leaving the Reds seventh in the table, 11 points behind Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea.

The goal: Rooney, who netted in the victory against the Gunners, didn’t have to wait long for his second Premier League strike for United. With seven minutes gone, Darren Fletcher’s lofted cross found the 19-year-old forward in space between defenders Steven Taylor and Titus Bramble on the right-hand side of the Newcastle area. Rooney allowed the ball to drop over his shoulder before expertly volleying home.

What happened next: Alan Shearer’s superb individual goal drew the Magpies level, but Ruud van Nistelrooy converted a penalty following a Shay Given foul, to put United back in the ascendancy. An apparent late leveller for the home side was then ruled out for a foul and Rooney added a second deep into injury-time to kick off a sequence of 14 wins in 16 league games, that would catapult us to second by March.

The reaction: "With Chelsea and Arsenal winning, it's a big win," said Rooney. "It keeps us in the race. No one should write us off."