Wayne Rooney is set to be named in Manchester United’s squad for tonight’s FA Cup quarter-final replay against West Ham United.
The 30-year-old played 60 minutes for Man United’s U21s on Monday night in his first game back since injuring his knee ligaments at Sunderland in February.
Starting a player who hasn’t featured for the first-team in two months is a risk surely Louis van Gaal wouldn’t even take, so if Rooney does play it is more than likely going to be from the bench.
Having Rooney available again is only the first step as far as he is concerned because, as has always been the case, Rooney needs a run of games to get his match sharpness back. With so much riding on the game tonight, it might be a risk too far for van Gaal.
United travel to Upton Park with 90 minutes in between them and effectively the end of the season if we fail to go through as we’ll only have a scrap for the top four to aim towards between now and May. Having already done that last year, it would not be progression to just do the same thing again.
As for Rooney, with such little time left before the end of the season I can’t see him having any real sort of influence for United but if van Gaal’s previous exploits are anything to go by, that won’t stop him from starting Rooney in every game.