• Premier League

Moyes: Rooney deal not yet done

ESPN staff
February 21, 2014
Wayne Rooney is close to agreeing a new five-and-a-half year deal at Manchester United © Getty Images

David Moyes believes it will be "great" for Manchester United to tie down Wayne Rooney to a new contract and said the striker is vital to his plans.

Rooney, 28, is expected to sign a five-and-a-half year deal in the next few days that will keep him at Old Trafford until 2019.

Moyes, who has brought Rooney back into the fold after he ended Sir Alex Ferguson's reign out of the squad, believes it will be a boost when he puts pen to paper.

"Everyone knows how important he [Rooney] is," said Moyes. "He's a terrific footballer. If we can get it done it will be great."

Rooney, who has scored 11 goals this season, is expected to line up against Crystal Palace when United travel to Selhurst Park on Saturday.

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Moyes believes his team are benefiting from having a warm-weather break in Dubai after they had a weekend off because of their elimination from the FA Cup.

He added: "It was great that we had some time together with the players - the first time I've really had the chance to have a few days with the lad.

"We trained and had some relaxation time as well, so it was good. You hope you get some benefit from it. I'm sure it will benefit the players, having the chance to relax. We'd have rather been in the FA Cup, let me tell you that more than anything, but we weren't so the next thing we had to do was get them ready for the 12 remaining games."

Moyes hopes that the size of his squad will enable United to end the campaign in good form.

He explained: "There's a squad here that's always been used to being rotated and used. That's why, lots of times, United have often been strong at the end of the season - they make sure players haven't played every game.

"So when the big games come in the end they have fresh players. We're fortunate with the squad we have here that we've been able to do that. We've tried to give everybody an opportunity to show what they can do as well, which is really important when you get a new manager in."

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