Everton v Manchester United: Wayne Rooney fit to start against his former team, says David Moyes

Striker had been a doubt for the Goodison Park clash with an injured toe

Wayne Rooney is fit to start Manchester United's game at Everton on Sunday, manager David Moyes has said.

Rooney injured a toe in his left foot during United's first leg draw against Bayern Munich and he struggled in the return leg the following week.

The striker will travel to Goodison Park on Sunday though after making encouraging progress in his rehabilitation from the injury.

"Wayne Rooney has trained great this week," Moyes said.

"He is in really good form. Getting him back is a good thing.

"He just wasn't right with his toe at times in the last game."

When asked whether Rooney would be in the squad for the Everton match, Moyes replied: "Yes."

Moyes was in a good mood ahead of his first match back at Goodison Park since leaving the club to join United last summer.

 

His spirits have been lifted by the news that Robin van Persie is making a good progress in his return from a knee injury he sustained against Olympiacos.

Van Persie jarred his knee in the 3-0 win against the Greeks on March 21 and he has been sent to Holland to aid his recovery.

"Robin is making improvements," the Scot said.

"We always thought he would be out for 4-6 weeks.

"We'll have a better assessment in the next week or so as we'll see how he is coming along.

"Our medical team is heading out there to see him this week and get a better feel as to exactly where he is."

Moyes confirmed that Marouane Fellaini has overcome a calf injury and should be fit to face his old club.

"Felli (Fellaini) didn't play against Bayern but we expect him back fit because he has trained all week," Moyes said.

Moyes ruled Rafael out due to a thigh problem while Jonny Evans is a doubt because of a long-term calf injury.

Sunday's fixture will be the first time Moyes has gone back to the club where he spent 11 successful years.

Moyes had tears in his eyes as he said his goodbyes to the Everton fans last May, but some Toffees supporters turned against him shortly after his departure.

Read more: Martinez predicts warm reception for Moyes
De Gea wants to 'ensure' United qualify for Europa League
Rio: Retire? I'm living the dream

A failed £28million bid from United for Fellaini and England left-back Leighton Baines angered some Everton fans and the Merseyside club branded the offer as "derisory" and "insulting".

That anger was evident when Everton supporters barracked Moyes during the Toffees' 1-0 win at Old Trafford in December.

Moyes was reluctant to speak about what kind of reception he might get at Goodison this weekend.

"The game is not about me, it's about Everton and Manchester United," he said.

"I was proud to be manager of Everton at that time but my job now is to make sure I get a result for Manchester United.

"The fans were always terrific in my time there, they were very supportive and always right behind the team.

"We had some really big games there at times and they'll be supporting the team like the Manchester United supporters have for their team."

Some had expected Everton to go through a year of transition under Roberto Martinez, but Moyes' successor has enjoyed a superb first year on Merseyside.

Everton are one point adrift of the top four and had it not been for a midweek defeat to Crystal Palace, Martinez's team would have been in pole position to pip Arsenal to the final Champions League qualification place.

Moyes, on the other hand, has struggled during his first term at Old Trafford.

Moyes admits it is almost "mathematically impossible" to catch Everton or Arsenal, but he does not begrudge his old side any success.

"I'm looking forward to going back as I had some great times and worked with great people and, more importantly, some great players," Moyes added.

"They were terrific and I'm really pleased to see them doing well.

"Roberto has done a brilliant job there in the time he has been in charge.

"He's got them playing well and in a good, healthy league position so I go back with some great feelings but I'm back now as Manchester United manager and my focus is on that now."

PA

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

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003