Wayne Rooney 'gutted' after being sent home from Manchester United's pre-season tour

The striker picked up a hamstring injury shortly after arriving in Thailand

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Just 16 hours after arriving in Thailand for Manchester United's pre-season tour, striker Wayne Rooney picked up an injury that would see him sent back to England.

The England international has damaged his hamstring and is expected to be out for a month.

United immediately took the decision to send the 27-year-old back to the UK - even though he had only landed that morning.

It means Rooney will miss visits to Australia - including a planned trip to State of Origin, Japan and Hong Kong - in addition to United's tour opener against Singha All Stars in Bangkok on Saturday.

Rooney has since taken to Facebook to express his disappointment at the set-back to his preparations for the season ahead.

"Gutted to have picked up a niggling injury especially as training was going so well, heading back to Manchester to have it assessed fully but early indications are nothing to worry about," said Rooney on his Facebook page as he headed for the airport.

If Rooney is ruled out for a month it would mean he could feature in the Community Shield against Wigan at Wembley on August 11.

The incident came just a day after manager David Moyes revealed United staff had told him Rooney had returned for pre-season training in his best shape for years.

It is bound to trigger conspiracy theories given it comes against the backdrop of uncertainty over his United future.

Moyes repeated again yesterday that Rooney is not for sale and that the 27-year-old would not be going anywhere.

However, The Independent understands that Chelsea are increasingly confident that he can be prised away from Old Trafford and have made him their number one target this summer.

Arsenal have also been linked with the forward, as have Paris St Germain.