As one of the more experienced members of Sir Alex Ferguson’s squad having spent more than ten years playing top-flight football, Wayne Rooney is a man who has plenty of knowledge about this stage of the season.
Despite Champions League heartbreak, thanks partly to Real Madrid and also a suspect refereeing decision, the 27-year-old maintains that United are on track for a league and cup double.
Rooney remains insistent that United will end the season on a high after last week’s disappointing exit and is a believer that success this season will be a springboard to further silverware in the future for Sir Alex Ferguson’s young squad, with the forward likely to be at the forefront for the coming years.
Speaking to Inside United, Rooney said: “We have a brilliant squad with a great mix of experienced players and young players who all have great ability and a real desire to win.
“Being successful this season is really important because it would give us a great platform to kick on in the next few years. Once the young players get their first taste of silverware with the club they’ll realise how good it feels and they’ll want to keep doing it again and again.
“Hopefully they’ll get to taste it this season.”
With the league looking to be something of an eventuality and not a case of ‘if’ but ‘when’, with United standing 12 points clear of title-rivals Manchester City, the squad could be forgiven for becoming a little complacent.
However, after last season’s tumultuous season finale with United dropping an eight point lead with six games remaining, Rooney insists the players are taking little for granted and are taking it game-by-game.
“You have to just take it game by game and work on specific things for that match and then move on to the next,” he continued.
“That’s what we’ve always done. We’ve never looked too far ahead. There are big games coming up but you have to win the games before that to make sure you’re still in a good position when the big ones come round.
“[With the 12-point lead] you just want to either maintain it or try and extend it by keeping on winning. You never look at the situation and say ‘we’re this many points clear so we can afford to lose a game and draw one or two’.
“It’s about winning and making sure you don’t drop any points. That’s always been the mentality here and our approach is always to win.”