Wayne Rooney will be fit for England insists David Moyes, despite missing Champions League draw with Shakhtar Donetsk
The striker will be available for the crucial World Cup qualifiers
Wayne Rooney will be fit for England's crucial World Cup qualifiers against Montengro and Poland after Manchester United manager David Moyes revealed tonight that the shin injury which kept him out of the side in Donetsk is a minor problem and not an impediment to him playing at Sunderland at the weekend.
England manager Roy Hodgson names his squad for the qualifiers today with Liverpool's Glen Johnson, Arsenal midfielders Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott and West Ham United striker Andy Carroll all missing. Moyes said he had planned to rest Rooney by keeping him on the bench. Though “at a push” he could have been risked n eastern Ukraine, he will travel to Wearside on Saturday, four days after clashing shins with Danny Welbeck in training on Tuesday - his fourth injury of the season.
Moyes declared that he had restored United to the basics of being difficult to beat, in the draw at Donetsk which removes some of the pressure which has engulfed him during his difficult early days at the helm.
After stiffening the midfield with an extra player, Moyes admitted that the 1-1 draw “wasn't the most exciting game” and also reflected the disappointment United's players clearly felt as they left the stadium - after failing to see out the lead they held for an hour. “We had to be harder to play against than we have been in recent games and we were tonight,” he said. “I want to see all the players play and give them all an opportunity. I am beginning to understand them better. They were aware of how tough a game it was going to be and they defended well throughout the whole game.”
Moyes rejected the idea that he had defended for a draw against Shakhtar, who had won the three previous games they had played here against English opposition in the Champions League. “We never played for a draw. We played to win,” he said. “It was a bit of disappointment we didn't see the game out, but Shaktar had a lot of pressure. I don't think they worried us, but unfortunately they have scored the goal late in the game. Shakhtar are a good team. They have a great reputation and they get good results here. It is a point away from home and I don't think it is a bad result. I'm disappointed we didn't go on to win 1-0, but I felt Shakhtar deserved something from the game.”
Moyes also argued that Marouane Fellani, strong in United's midfield, had been given “a hard night by Czech referee Pavel Kralovec.
Latest in Sport
Manchester United can learn lessons from the transfer template of rivals Manchester City
Pavement The Forum, London
Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea top the list of the Premier League's most expensive squads
Bayern Munich 'training camp' to supply refugees with food, footballs and German lessons
David De Gea, Peter Odemwingie and the 18 weirdest transfer deadline day stories
- 1 More than 11,000 Icelanders offer to house Syrian refugees to help European crisis
- 2 If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
- 3 Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
- 4 Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees
- 5 Refugee crisis: Aylan's life was full of fear - in death, he is part of 'humanity washed ashore'
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up