Manchester United increase pressure on Wayne Rooney by using striker to promote friendly against AIK Solna
The striker is the subject of a bid from Chelsea
Thursday 25 July 2013
Manchester United have increased the pressure on Wayne Rooney by using his image to promote next month's friendly against AIK Solna in Stockholm.
On Monday, United manager David Moyes confirmed Rooney was on track to feature in the game after responding well to treatment on the hamstring injury that forced him to fly home from the club's pre-season tour less than 24 hours after his arrival.
Although the player wants to leave United, preferably for Chelsea, the Red Devils have insisted Rooney is not for sale.
And by using Rooney to promote the game in Sweden on August 6, with the word 'Back' superimposed over his image and his shirt number 10 on a picture posted on Twitter, the club appear to be making a significant point.
With two years remaining on his contract, Rooney is hardly in a position not to travel, although there have been suggestions he may opt to force the issue by handing in a transfer request.
There is also the possibility United's stance may soften should they succeed in their pursuit of Barcelona's Cesc Fabregas.
Rooney's fellow striker Robin van Persie did travel to Osaka with his team-mates yesterday despite picking up a thigh injury in Tuesday's surprise defeat to J League outfit Yokohama F Marinos.
Meanwhile, Jonny Evans has revealed he has become a football obsessive in order to make sure he is not left behind in the battle for a first-team spot at Old Trafford.
Speaking to Press Association Sport during United's tour of the Far East and Australia, the Northern Ireland international said: "For me, the last couple of years has been about learning how to live right off the pitch.
"My focus has been solely about football. When I wake up in the morning it is the first thing I think about.
"I take time and think about how I am going to improve.
"It becomes an obsession. I get up two hours earlier than I used to. I get into training earlier and go to the gym.
"I understand there is a fine line. I like to play golf. I like to spend time with my wife. I don't overkill it. As soon as I have finished training I try to relax.
"But I have a routine which I have worked hard at and which works for me."
Such singlemindedness and dedication are traits to be admired in an era where so many players are prepared to settle for something less than their best because the trappings of stardom have already arrived.
"The way I look at it is if I didn't do that stuff I might not still be at Manchester United," he said.
"When I see people working hard and putting the effort in I think 'fair play'.
"Others might think it is being busy or you are doing stupid work but it gives you a mental edge."
Latest in Sport
Jay Hart sex tape: Non-league footballer sacked after being filmed having sex with unknown blonde girl in manager's dug-out
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao: What time does it start and where can I watch it?
Radamel Falcao to Liverpool: Agent of Manchester United striker 'makes contact' with Anfield
Cesc Fabregas in Premier League title dig at Arsenal after pointing out '27 year wait'
Manchester United 2015/16 kit leak: Orange and black strip likened to former Chelsea jersey emerges online
- 1 Rarest Beanie Baby bought for just £10 at car boot sale could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 5 Cancel Sky at your peril: man spends 96 minutes in chat but fails to get rid of service
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate