Wayne Rooney 'has more privileges' than other Manchester United players and 'will always play', reveals Louis van Gaal

The captain is given assurances over his position in the starting XI

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The Independent Online

Wayne Rooney is guaranteed s place in the Manchester United starting XI according to Louis van Gaal, despite the influx of players over the summer.

Rooney's role as captain gives him "privileges" that the others don't enjoy said Van Gaal - including that he "shall always play."

The view of the Manchester United manager puts an interesting twist on his selection conundrum as he looks to juggle a raft of players who will expect to feature every week.

Radamel Falcao and Angel Di Maria arrived over the summer to compliment Rooney, Robin van Persie, Adnan Januzaj and James Wilson as options in attack.

If Van Gaal has his way, Cristiano Ronaldo could also be among his options in the future.

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal (centre) with his new signings Radamel Falcao (left) and Daley Blind during a photocall at Old Trafford


Juan Mata, who was signed last January, is one of the many options in midfield along with Daley Blind and Ander Herrera who joined over the summer as well. Antonio Valencia, Marouane Fellaini, Anderson, Ashley Young, Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick will also be among those disappointed to miss out.

United started the season with a 3-4-1-2 system, but Van Gaal played 4-4-2 during the 4-0 win over QPR and his long-term aim is to get the team playing 4-3-3. Where everyone will fit is far from clear and Van Gaal is not making promises to any of them - except Rooney.

"Only the captain has more privileges," Van Gaal said.

"No other player has privileges.

"There are always players we put in the line-up in a team - my captain shall always play."


Van Persie, who is yet to score this season, could be the most vulnerable player in the squad because of Falcao's arrival.

Van Gaal denies having both players in his squad causes problems though.

"I don't think that Falcao interfered with Van Persie or Van Persie interfered with Falcao," the former Netherlands coach said.

"I think Falcao is a very good striker. I also said when he was coming in his first press conference that I like Van Persie also.

"Then we have Rooney and Januzaj and we have (James) Wilson. We have five players for the two striker positions and I have to choose."

Manchester United play Leicester City this weekend.