Manchester United round-up: Rio Ferdinand backs Rooney to help Van Gaal

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Manchester United fans, hello and welcome back.

It’s been a short while since our last round-up - the call of the Christmas break was simply too much for some - but we’ve returned just in time to get the show on the road for the new year.

On the eve of the January transfer window, there’s much and more to discuss. Watch the video above or read on below for the latest.

Ferdinand: Rooney is key

Louis van Gaal has cut a beleaguered figure of late as he’s continued to march through the storm at Manchester United but there’s one man who could be key to saving his job, according to Rio Ferdinand.

The former Old Trafford defender believes Wayne Rooney could be vital to Van Gaal, praising the Dutchman’s decision to drop his captain for the 2-0 defeat to Stoke City.

Ferdinand said - via his column for The Sun - that decision could prove to be a masterstroke as it might have been a wake-up call for Rooney.

"Rooney’s display reminded us of the player who used to light up English football — a player we have seen too infrequently under manager Louis van Gaal," he wrote.

"And I reckon being dropped for the previous game against Stoke was the best thing that could have happened to him.

"When you are dumped on the bench it is a huge blow to your pride, as I learned from my own personal experience in the latter days of my career.

"You re-evaluate all aspects of your life. You examine your social habits, attitude to the game, application in training, your mental approach, absolutely everything.

"And if you have anything about you, you make a vow that the manager can never again have a reason to leave you out of the team.

"Wayne will have been hurt and desperate to prove a point.

"He didn’t score and was lucky not to be sent off for a nasty tackle on Oscar. But other than that, his all-round game was superb.

"So, one of two things must have happened.

"Van Gaal may have taken the shackles off and allowed Rooney to go out and express himself.

"Either that or Wayne has thought “Sod it, I’ll play how I want to play”. Whatever it was, it worked."

Let us know what you think on the matter in the comments box.

Januzaj rumour

Now, rumours are abound concerning Adnan Januzaj’s future at United, with the Belgian midfielder having been present to watch his parent club play Chelsea.

The Sun claim Januzaj being there is evidence that his loan spell at Dortmund could be cut short prematurely.

It’s almost certainly not the case, but where there are embers certain publications can’t help but try and create fire.

Here are some of Januzaj's best bits from his time at Dortmund so far:

Mikel: Chelsea players wanted Rooney red card

Meanwhile, Chelsea ace John Obi Mikel has revealed that Blues players wanted Rooney sent off for the tackle he put in on Oscar during the 0-0 draw earlier this week.

The England captain was handed a yellow card for a studs-up challenge on Oscar in injury time and though Mikel didn’t see the incident himself, he’s claimed he heard enough from his teammates to know that it warranted more.

Here's the foul for your assessment:

Giving Rooney his marching orders probably wouldn’t have impacted upon the result of the match given the time that was left, but it could have seen him hit with a three-match ban.

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Premier League
Rio Ferdinand
Manchester United
Wayne Rooney

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