Three reasons why Man United can’t rely on just Wayne Rooney

Three reasons why Man United can't afford to rely on just Wayne Rooney up front this season

His role changes under LvG

It is difficult to tell what Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has under his sleeve for Wayne Rooney. In his first season as United boss, Rooney played a variety of positions: striker, second-striker, central midfield and even playing a wide role. Although he played alternate roles in the past for United, his sole purpose has always been to play as an attacker and deliver the goods for the team. Last season, we saw a United side fluctuate and change formations and a style of play, similar to Rooney, too. Should United rest the fate of their season in the hands of their captain, Rooney needs to play a forward role in Van Gaal’s philosophy if he is to get any sort of result, not in the heart of midfield like last season.

Best as a team player rather than the player the team rely on

United will be hoping to bring back the Premier League title from Chelsea this season, and should Rooney be their main 20-goal striker, the stats do not look in United’s favour. During his time at Old Trafford so far, Wayne Rooney has hit the 20-goal target in the Premier League twice (2009-10 ]26] and 2011-12 [27]). Despite winning the League Cup (2009-10) and the Community Shield (2011-12), United finished second in the league in both seasons. Many United fans will not be impressed to see the Red Devils without the league title again for the third season in a row – which would be a first since 2003-06 – and will be expecting Van Gaal to bring home the title and live up to his impressive trophy record from his previous clubs. It will be best for Rooney to be able to roam free when United attack in order to get the best out of him and for the team rather than a rigid formula that could limit Rooney’s attributes.

It hasn’t worked for England

United should learn lessons from the England. Rooney cannot have the sole responsibility of the team regardless of whether or not he has the captaincy. Since Rooney stepped to the scene at the tender age of 16, the nation have always put the weight of the world on his shoulders and as a result, England crumble. His injuries in Euro 2004 and the 2006 World Cup saw England fail to show any sort of a plan B with the likes of Emile Heskey and Darius Vassell (Euro 2004), Peter Crouch (World Cup 2006)* and Michael Owen (both) failing to show up in the latter stages of the tournament. Typically, the managers focussed their attack on Rooney which lead to the national team producing predictable football and he only managed to score his first World Cup goal in Brazil 2014 against Uruguay.
*Yes Walcott was in the squad but never made an appearance

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