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RVP would have been a 'disaster' as United captain

ESPN staff
August 14, 2014
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Dwight Yorke has backed Louis van Gaal's decision to pick Wayne Rooney as his Manchester United captain and said appointing Robin van Persie would have been a "disaster."

Van Gaal announced Rooney as the new United captain shortly after the club's 2-1 pre-season victory against Valencia at Old Trafford on Tuesday, with Darren Fletcher also being named vice-captain.

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  • "It is difficult to imagine Manchester United having another season like last time out under Louis van Gaal. It's easy to laud a manager through past stories but contemporary examples back up the point that Van Gaal could be United's biggest strength."
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Van Persie, who was made captain of the Dutch national team by Van Gaal, was long considered favourite to be given the United armband but Yorke believes Rooney was the obvious choice.

"I think it's a fantastic move for the club and fantastic for Wayne too," Yorke told the Sun. "He's been at the club 10 years this month, he remains the best player and for me he epitomises Manchester United.

"To me appointing Van Persie would have been a disaster. Yes, he's done it for Holland and Arsenal but he's only been at United for five minutes.

"Wayne has played such a huge part of their success. He's a major figure in that dressing room. He's worked under some great United captains and he'll know all about how they did the job.

"Rooney is the most senior person there, you look at his form and the way he's conducted himself pre-season and for me he was the obvious choice.

Van Gaal in Fergie's mould

  • Manchester United legend Dwight Yorke believes the club's new manager Louis van Gaal strikes fear into his players in the same mould Sir Alex Ferguson used to.
  • Van Gaal has constructed a commanding presence, among players and his United chiefs, since he joined up with his new club and Yorke says the Dutchman's influence is showing shades of Ferguson.
  • "I went on the tour to the US and the similarities between Ferguson and Van Gaal are there for all to see," Yorke told the Sun.
  • "I know for a fact that the new manager is already sending shivers down a few spines, just like Sir Alex used to do. They know they can't step out of line with this guy."

"It came as no surprise to me when Wayne was appointed. Van Gaal has been at the club for a month now and watched him close up. He will have realised what Wayne Rooney is all about.

"Until you actually get in to a club, see how it works, what the players are like, you can't make a fair assessment."

Rooney's appointment has caused a stir with some United fans, with the striker having handed in a transfer request at the club in May 2013.

However, following Rooney's resurgence under Van Gaal, Yorke believes the England forward is settled at the club and will relish being given the armband.

"Wayne has been a captain before. He knows what it's all about and I believe he'll relish the responsibility," Yorke said.

"It's a huge honour to be named as the permanent captain of this great club, not many people have done it. I was made captain of my country and I can't tell you how good it makes you feel to get the armband."

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