Jose Mourinho reveals why he stood by Wayne Rooney on Saturday
Manchester United fans took to Twitter to call for Wayne Rooney to be substituted during Saturday's Premier League game at Hull - with manager Jose Mourinho has now revealing why he left his mis-firing skipper on the field.
Rooney was struggling to make his mark in the rain at Hull, with United seemingly destined to drop their first points of the season as the game moved into injury time without a goal.
That before Rooney made a decisive move into the Hull box and served up a chance for Marus Rashford to snatch the winner for United to maintain their 100 per-cent winning start to the season.
"I was just reading the game and feeling that playing with the two strikers, Marcus and Zlatan (Ibrahimovic), I needed (Henrikh) Mkhitaryan and Rooney just inside because the full-backs were the ones playing really wide on the touchline," said Mourinho.
“I didn’t need wingers because at this moment the wingers were Valencia and Luke Shaw, so instead of wingers I needed people to play inside in that position.
"I know that he’s (Rooney) the guy with the vision for an assist and a feeling for the ball and that he could perfectly be important, like he was.”
Mourinho went on to insist he would have no qualms in substituting Rooney if required in future games, as he suggested criticism of his captain was misplaced.
“He was like the team. The first half he was okay but the team was a little bit slow in the transitions,” added Mourinho.
“The team wasn’t playing with the intensity that we need and he was part of it. In the second half when the team brought a different gear, he did the same.
“And when I put him playing from the outside, with the two strikers in the middle, him and Mkhitaryan developed a lot of our attacking waves, so I’m very happy with him.”