Manchester United strikers Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie may start together for first time against CFR Cluj

 

Manchester United could start with Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie in attack for the first time since the Dutchman's move to Old Trafford from Arsenal against CFR Cluj in tomorrow's Champions League clash.

Rooney is fit again after missing five matches with a gashed thigh and the England striker galvanised United in the second half against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday, although they still lost 3-2.

"Probably the strongest part of the club will be in the striker department," manager Alex Ferguson told reporters before leaving for Romania.

Cluj impressed during a 2-0 win at Portuguese side Braga in their opening Group H match and the club's Portuguese captain Cadu believes they can produce another surprise against United and end a sequence of Champions League failures.

The Railwaymen have started all three of their Champions League campaigns with a victory but each time followed up by failing to win any more matches in their group and being eliminated.

"United are one of the best teams in the world, the strongest side ever to visit Cluj but we can produce a surprise as we did in Braga (last month) and in Rome (against AS Roma in 2008)," Cadu told local media.

"We will attack because we want to win. We have nothing to lose, we already have three points, the table looks very good at the moment and we hope to keep it in that way.

"It'll be totally different match than the one in Braga," added Cadu who would like to exchange shirts with his compatriot Nani after the game.

"English teams use more direct style of play with a lot of tackles but it'll be a unique experience for us. You don't have a chance to play against United every day."

The 30-year-old, who joined the Romanians from Boavista in 2006, was instrumental in helping Cluj win three league titles, three national cups and two Supercups.

United's experienced midfield trio Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Michael Carrick - whose goal helped beat Galatasaray 1-0 in their opening group match - were left out of the squad for the trip to the Balkan country.

Ferguson will also have to cope without injured Nemanja Vidic, Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young.

Rio Ferdinand and Jonny Evans, who has recovered from a knock he took at the end of Saturday's defeat, are expected to play in the centre of defence.

United also faced Romanian opposition last season, beating Otelul Galati 2-0 home and away, although both were eliminated at the end of the group stage.

Reuters

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Solved after 200 years: the mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army

Solved after 200 years

The mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army
Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise

Robert Fisk on the Turkey conflict

Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise
Investigation into wreck of unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden

Sunken sub

Investigation underway into wreck of an unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden
Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes

Age of the selfie

Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes
Not so square: How BBC's Bloomsbury saga is sexing up the period drama

Not so square

How Virginia Woolf saga is sexing up the BBC period drama
Rio Olympics 2016: The seven teenagers still carrying a torch for our Games hopes

Still carrying the torch

The seven teenagers given our Olympic hopes
The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis, but history suggests otherwise

The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis...

...but history suggests otherwise
The bald truth: How one author's thinning hair made him a Wayne Rooney sympathiser

The bald truth

How thinning hair made me a Wayne Rooney sympathiser
Froome wins second Tour de France after triumphant ride into Paris with Team Sky

Tour de France 2015

Froome rides into Paris to win historic second Tour
Fifteen years ago, Concorde crashed, and a dream died. Today, the desire to travel faster than the speed of sound is growing once again

A new beginning for supersonic flight?

Concorde's successors are in the works 15 years on from the Paris crash
I would never quit Labour, says Liz Kendall

I would never quit party, says Liz Kendall

Latest on the Labour leadership contest
Froome seals second Tour de France victory

Never mind Pinot, it’s bubbly for Froome

Second Tour de France victory all but sealed
Oh really? How the 'lowest form of wit' makes people brighter and more creative

The uses of sarcasm

'Lowest form of wit' actually makes people brighter and more creative
A magazine editor with no vanity, and lots of flair

No vanity, but lots of flair

A tribute to the magazine editor Ingrid Sischy
Foraging: How the British rediscovered their taste for chasing after wild food

In praise of foraging

How the British rediscovered their taste for wild food