Wayne Rooney could still be used as a striker at Manchester United, says Louis van Gaal

The England captain has found himself regularly deployed in a midfield role

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Wayne Rooney could still be deployed as a striker for Manchester United, Louis van Gaal has said.

The England captain has found himself utilised in midfield on a regular basis this season, with Radamel Falcao and Robin van Persie preferred in the striker roles when all three are available.

Following the disjointed display against West Ham, in which a lack of movement from Falcao and Van Persie drew criticism, the wisdom of utilising Rooney further back came into question. That the Manchester United captain is keeping specialist midfielders such as Juan Mata and Ander Herrera out of the side has also not gone unnoticed.

Yet speaking ahead of tonight's Premier League game against Burnley, Van Gaal appeared to suggest a return to the front line for Rooney is not out of the question.

"It can change every week," said the Dutchman. "It is dependable on the circumstances."


Van Gaal went on to suggest whatever selections he makes will be questioned.

"When I am not lining up Falcao, you are asking 'where is Falcao?'

"When I don't line up Van Persie you are asking 'where is van Persie?'.

"When I play Rooney in midfield I know in advance he is not always in the situation to score."

Rooney is currently third in the all-time top scorers at Manchester United, 25 off Sir Bobby Charlton's record.