• Premier League

Ferguson warns 'stocky' Rooney

ESPN staff
October 7, 2012
Sir Alex Ferguson expects both Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie to score more than 20 goals each this season © Getty Images

Sir Alex Ferguson has warned Wayne Rooney that he must continue to train hard or his fitness could quickly slide.

However, the Manchester United boss is confident his striker is back to full fitness and ready to "explode".

Rooney provided two assists for strike partner Robin van Persie in United's 2-1 win over CFR Cluj in midweek, and Ferguson believes it is only a matter of time before the goals come.

"Rooney is fit, he has trained really well," Ferguson said. "The period he was injured, I think that was key to it. He maintained his fitness which is important because he is a stocky lad.

"He is very stocky, he is going to have to train well all the time, there is no doubt about that.

"I think Rooney will start scoring soon, once he gets a few games back. We know that, his track record tells you that each year he gets better with his finishing. I think Rooney will explode again soon, aye. It is just the start of the season."

With United looking to put last weekend's shock home defeat to Tottenham behind them with three points at Newcastle on Sunday, Ferguson admits he has a welcome selection headache with a number of strike options available to him.

And the Scot wants Danny Welbeck and Javier Hernandez to share the goalscoring burden with Rooney and Van Persie.

He said: "If you go back to the season before last, Berbatov scored 20-21 goals, Chicharito scored 22 and Rooney scored 30-something. That was perfect, wasn't it? Two players there who took a load off of Rooney in that respect.

"I don't think it matters that much who gets the goals now. Van Persie has had a great start, seven goals. If him and Wayne and possibly one of the other strikers, Welbeck or Chicharito, get to around 20, we are in business. I think Rooney and Van Persie will get over 20."

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