Rooney hails Jose's aura

United captain says Mourinho expects the Red Devils to lift the Community Shield

LONDON • Wayne Rooney has described Jose Mourinho's low-key approach to life as Manchester United manager but insists the new Old Trafford chief has a fierce will to win.

The United captain was talking after he marked his testimonial with a goal-less draw against Everton, his team's final preparation before Sunday's Community Shield meeting with Premier League champions Leicester City.

It was also the first Old Trafford game in which Mourinho, United's third permanent manager since Alex Ferguson's retirement in 2013, has taken charge of the club.

Two of his predecessors, Ferguson and David Moyes, were in the stands to show their appreciation for Rooney's 12 years at the club and the striker insisted that Mourinho has yet to adopt the same confrontational style as Ferguson.

"He's not someone who is going to come in - at the moment he hasn't anyway - and start throwing things," said Rooney.

"You never know when the season starts. He's competitive and wants to win every game, whether it's a friendly tonight or the Charity Shield on Sunday.


He's not someone who is going to come in - at the moment he hasn't anyway - and start throwing things.

WAYNE ROONEY, Man United striker, on new manager Jose Mourinho.

"He expects a lot from his players and just from him talking he has got that aura about him where you know exactly the message he's getting across to you."

Ferguson earned a fierce reputation with talk of him having often thrown "tea cups" in anger in the United dressing room when things were not to his liking.

Mourinho may not have the same fearsome approach but, according to Rooney, he is every bit as much a winner as Ferguson.

"He wants to win. He wanted to win tonight," said Rooney. "He reiterated that at half-time. Playing for Manchester United, even if it's a friendly game you want to win."

The pairing between Rooney and new signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic lasted less than an hour although there were glimpses of its potential. "It was a good performance but also minutes on the pitch," said Rooney.

Ibrahimovic had only praise for his new strike partner. The Swede said: "I said many years ago the perfect partner for a striker is Wayne Rooney. He works not only for himself but for the striker and the whole team. I'm absolutely happy to be one of the guys beside him."

Everton manager Ronald Koeman, who completed the £7.1 million (S$12.7 million) signing of Aston Villa midfielder Idrissa Gueye on the day before the testimonial, was not impressed with his own team's efforts at Old Trafford.

"Tonight, we had good organisation in the team but I expect quality on the ball. Tonight our ball possession wasn't the level I expect," the Dutchman said.

Elsewhere, Ahmed Musa scored twice but could not stop Leicester slipping to a 4-2 International Champions Cup defeat against Barcelona in Stockholm.

Leicester - beaten 4-0 by Paris Saint-Germain in the same competition in Los Angeles last weekend - appeared to be heading for another embarrassing defeat after Munir El Haddadi (two) and Luis Suarez scored before the break. But Nigerian striker Musa, Leicester's record signing at a reported £16 million from CSKA Moscow last month, scored twice as a second-half substitute before Rafael Mujica secured Barcelona's victory late on.

In the competition's other matches, Chelsea defeated AC Milan 3-1 while Real Madrid beat Bayern Munich 1-0.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 05, 2016, with the headline 'Rooney hails Jose's aura'. Print Edition | Subscribe