Rooney's form quest means extra training

Click to follow

Wayne Rooney is hoping extra training will trigger a revival in his form. Since returning from domestic and international suspensions this month the Manchester United striker has struggled to reach his usual performance levels.

Rooney cut a disconsolate figure on the left wing in Lisbon on Tuesday and barely made an impact in the 1-0 Champions' League win over Benfica. At one stage the 20-year-old was berated by Sir Alex Ferguson for giving possession away too cheaply and he was replaced five minutes from the end of the match.

Carlos Queiroz, United's assistant manager, said yesterday that Rooney had done some additional work at the Carrington training complex.

"Wayne finished training then stayed a while working alone because he knows he needs to do something," Queiroz said. "It is good he is conscious of making mistakes. It means he comes in every day with a desire to work more and more. Wayne has reached such a level in the past and the demands he puts on himself are so big, he does not have the right to be young [sic] when he performs.

"Game by game, it will start to come right. The motivation and confidence will build up and I am sure he will be better against Newcastle [on Sunday].

"Sometimes young ta-lents like Wayne think they need to prove everything in each minute of the game," Queiroz continued. "They think they need to prove something in the first second and with their first touch. The first time they control the ball they feel the need to conquer the world.

"It takes time to learn they do not need to do that, that the team is more important. It is a natural part of the learning process which we can see here, in other teams, and all over the world."

The United defender Mikaël Silvestre faces six weeks out after injuring his foot against Arsenal earlier this month.