• Premier League

Valencia set to miss West Ham game for United

ESPN staff
November 26, 2012
Antonio Valencia has a hip problem © PA Photos

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Antonio Valencia is set to miss Manchester United's Wednesday match with West Ham due to a hip problem.

Sir Alex Ferguson hopes that the Ecuadorian, United's Player of the Year last season, could be fit to return for Saturday's trip to Reading.

Valencia sat out the 3-1 win over QPR and, with fellow right winger Nani also injured, Ashley Young could continue to deputise on that flank against Sam Allardyce's side.

"He had a hip injury," Ferguson told MUTV. "Just towards his back. He's had a bit of pain there for the last couple of weeks but he's been playing with it. That's the type of guy he is. He never mentioned it and plays on.

"All of a sudden, you ask him and he says: 'Yes, it's sore.' It won't be too long and he should be ready for maybe next week."

Meanwhile, Wayne Rooney said United need to start games better and score an early goal. QPR took the lead at Old Trafford - the 12th time in 20 games opponents have struck first against United - before Ferguson's team rallied with goals from Jonny Evans, Darren Fletcher and Javier Hernandez.

"I don't know why it is but it's happening too many times," Rooney said. "We need to just go out now and try to get the early goal. As soon as we get a goal, the team settles down and the game settles.

"We tend to take control of the game. But more often than not we've conceded first and made it hard for ourselves to try to get back in the game then go on and win it."

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