Wayne Rooney's performance for Manchester United in the weekend defeat of Arsenal has been hailed as 'exceptional' by Alan Shearer, who has also dismissed suggestions the England international has been struggling with his fitness.

Rooney provided the assist for Robin van Persie's goal at Old Trafford, which turned out to be the winner, and put in a tireless shift against the Premier League leaders, who had not lost since the season's opening day.

Although Manchester United have been inconsistent, Rooney has enjoyed an impressive start to the campaign on a personal level, with the 28-year-old having scored nine times in his last 15 games for club and country.

Rooney's efforts have not gone unnoticed by Shearer, who was particular impressed with the endeavour of the Manchester United striker against the Gunners.

It was claimed in the autobiography of Sir Alex Ferguson that Rooney has endured difficulties trying to keep fit during his time at Old Trafford, but Shearer says the encounter with Arsenal is proof that they player is as sharp as ever.

"I said on Match Of The Day at the weekend that I'm always reluctant to praise anyone for hard work alone," Shearer told The Mirror.

"As a footballer, that should be the norm. You get lads who work their socks off for a Sunday morning pub team, so why shouldn't Premier League players do the same?

"But the workrate Rooney put in against Arsenal on Sunday, whether helping out his defence or in midfield or up front, was exceptional. Not only did he work incredibly hard for his team, but he brought the ability with it.

"Fergie said his fitness was going - well, there has been nothing wrong with his fitness on Sunday, or this season, for United."

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