Rooney can't wait for Barcelona challenge

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Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney is raring to go for Wednesday's friendly encounter with Barcelona after easing back into action last weekend.

Rooney was afforded an extended break after his exploits with England at Euro 2012 and featured for the first time during pre-season in United's goalless draw with Valrenga on Sunday.

Up next for the Old Trafford club is an encounter with Tito Vilanova's Barcelona in Gothenburg, with both sides no doubt eager to strike a blow prior to the new campaign.

Rooney, though, is simply focused on regaining his match fitness ahead of the start of the Premier League campaign a week on Saturday, although admits the fact United play Barca adds some extra pre-season intrigue.

"It's great to play in big games and Barcelona is one of them," he told Manchester United's official website. "It's all part of our preparation and we need to make sure we do the right things.

"We want to enjoy the game and get our fitness ready for the first game of the season.

"The result, in some ways, isn't the most important thing. What's important is the fitness and the sharpness. I'm happy with how I'm doing.

"I've been training for almost two weeks and I've been working hard. Everything's going well so far.

"I feel good. I played two games in the summer and I played against Valerenga. Everybody needs games to get up to match fitness - not just me.

"I'm training well, though, and I'm looking forward to the next few games. Hopefully, by the start of the season, I'll be ready to play."

Manchester United will play one more friendly before their first league encounter of the season, with German club Hannover the opposition this weekend before facing Everton at Goodison Park.

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Manchester United
Wayne Rooney
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