Rooney off the mark
Wayne Rooney was thrilled after another afternoon of milestones yielded three important points for Manchester United at Old Trafford.
The striker’s first goal of the season, first career own goal and 200th strike at club level for the Reds and Everton all contributed to a rollercoaster game against Stoke City which the hosts ultimately deserved to win – despite going behind through Rooney’s error.
“It was my first own goal but thankfully we came back from that and managed to go in at the break in the lead, that was great for us,” Rooney told MUTV.
“I think it was a good performance from us. Stoke put a lot of high balls into the box and in the main we dealt with it well. There was just that one slip when I’ve scored the own goal. I was marking Ryan Shawcross and he ran me in there, there were bodies in the way and it [Charlie Adam’s free-kick] just hit me.
“I think it was important that I moved on from it quickly and didn’t let it affect the rest of my game. I think overall we deserved the three points.”
Rooney’s first goals for anyone this season came while he was on international duty last week, when he netted a brace in England’s 5-0 win over San Marino and then followed up with an away strike in Poland. Now he’s done the business at club level as well, joy rather than relief is his overriding emotion.
“I think as long as I’m playing well it doesn’t really concern me that much if I’m not scoring for United. Obviously as a forward you want to score. I’m delighted to get off the mark and to get amongst the goals. Hopefully there’s more to come but if I can keep up my performances, playing well and working well with the team, I’ll be happy with that.”
Wayne gave great credit to the creator of his first goal, which he plundered with a fine header from van Persie’s glorious left-wing cross.
“I think when you’ve got quality like that, someone who can deliver a ball into the box, then you know if you make a run you’ve got a chance of getting on the end of it. Thankfully it’s a great ball and I’ve managed to head it home. I think it was a great goal.
“That’s the first game we’ve started together up front and we’ve both scored. I’m sure it will get better and better, we have to keep working on that – not just the attacking but the defending side of it as well. We’re both pleased with the way it’s going and when we’ve also got Danny who’s also scored today and Chicharito came on, we’ve got great attacking options. It’s down to the manager to pick from them.”
It was ten years ago this weekend that Rooney scored his first-ever goal in senior club football – when Everton beat Arsenal. He’s rightly proud to have reached a double century in only a decade.
“I didn’t know I’d reached 200 club goals until after the game. I’m obviously delighted with that,” he added.”