Manchester United v Arsenal: Wayne Rooney confident United can retain Premier League title, warning 'we are hitting form at the right time'

Sunday will see United host Arsenal, who are currently eight points ahead at the top of the table

Wayne Rooney remains confident Manchester United can retain their Premier League title.

United face Arsenal on Sunday, trailing the Gunners by eight points and knowing defeat will put them in a precarious position as they look to keep hold of a crown they won by an impressive 11 points last term.

Not only that, it would place a huge question mark over the credentials of David Moyes' team given they collected a solitary draw from the early-season encounters with Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City that their new Scottish manager was so wary of.

Yet Rooney insists that inside the Old Trafford camp, none of these doubts exist.

The vibe, he revealed, remains that of champions.

"We always believe," he said. "We believe we can go on and win the league.

"We have been in this position before and gone on to win titles so there is no reason why we cannot do it again. We are hitting form at the right time.

"If we can continue that and get to Christmas within touching distance, or maybe even at the top, we will be in a great position."

Rooney was speaking at the launch of a three-year partnership between United and their new official timekeeper Bulova.

As part of the deal, the United squad will get the chance to design their own personalised watch, which Rooney intends to dedicate to his children - Kai and Klay.

Before that though, Rooney and his team-mates have a lot of work ahead of them.

At times this season it has almost seemed like Rooney has been carrying his team-mates.

While so many others, including Robin van Persie, have found life a struggle, the 28-year-old has been on top form.

It made it such a shame for United therefore that he was below peak fitness for those Chelsea and Manchester City games, and in between sitting out the Liverpool encounter completely after having his head sliced open in a freak training ground collision with Phil Jones.

Now Rooney is fully fit, although he is adamant United are no one-man band.

"I hope I can make a difference this weekend," he said. "But we have many players who can win us games.

"It is not about one person. It is about us all working together to get those three points.

"We are starting to adjust to the training and the new ideas from the manager. We are playing a bit better and have been getting good results.

"Overall, we are in a good place. I am sure if we can win on Sunday it will make us even stronger and give us that belief that we can go on."

On Sunday, Rooney says the collective effort must involve the Old Trafford faithful.

Often derided for a lack of atmosphere, the stadium tend to be at its noisiest for the biggest of matches.

For all kinds of reasons, this fixture is among the most important. Rooney just hopes the Red Devils supporters recognise it.

"The atmosphere at Old Trafford for big games is great," he said. "I am sure the fans realise this is a really important match for us and will be at their best.

"When they are like that it brings energy into our play. We will need them this weekend."

PA

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

Greece debt crisis: EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

EU 'family' needs to forgive rather than punish an impoverished state

An outbreak of malaria in Greece four years ago helps us understand the crisis, says Robert Fisk
Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge: The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas

Gaza, a year on from Operation Protective Edge

The traumatised kibbutz on Israel's front line, still recovering from last summer's war with Hamas
How to survive electrical storms: What are the chances of being hit by lightning?

Heavy weather

What are the chances of being hit by lightning?
World Bodypainting Festival 2015: Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'

World Bodypainting Festival 2015

Bizarre and brilliant photos celebrate 'the body as art'
alt-j: A private jet, a Mercury Prize and Latitude headliners

Don't call us nerds

Craig Mclean meets alt-j - the math-folk act who are flying high
How to find gold: The Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge

How to find gold

Steve Boggan finds himself in the Californian badlands, digging out crevasses and sifting sludge
Singing accents: From Herman's Hermits and David Bowie to Alesha Dixon

Not born in the USA

Lay off Alesha Dixon: songs sound better in US accents, even our national anthem
10 best balsamic vinegars

10 best balsamic vinegars

Drizzle it over salad, enjoy it with ciabatta, marinate vegetables, or use it to add depth to a sauce - this versatile staple is a cook's best friend
Wimbledon 2015: Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Brief glimpses of the old Venus but Williams sisters' epic wars belong to history

Serena dispatched her elder sister 6-4, 6-3 in eight minutes more than an hour
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy