Jose Mourinho ‘has got that aura, he wants to win every game’, hails Man United captain Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney has said Jose Mourinho has adopted a low-key approach to life as Manchester United manager but still has a fierce will to win.
The United and England captain, 30, was talking after he marked his testimonial with a goalless draw against Everton, his team’s final preparation before Sunday’s Community Shield meeting with Premier League champions Leicester City.
It was also the first Old Trafford game in which Mourinho, United’s fourth manager in five turbulent seasons, has taken charge of the club.
Two of his predecessors, Alex Ferguson and David Moyes, were in the stands to show their appreciation for Rooney’s 12 years at the club and the striker said that Mourinho has yet to adopt the same confrontational style as Ferguson.
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“He’s not someone who is going to come in — at the moment he hasn’t anyway — and start throwing things,” Rooney said.
“You never know when the season starts. He’s competitive and wants to win every game, whether it’s a friendly tonight or the Charity Shield on Sunday.
“He obviously gets his message across. He wants to win but he’s not a real big shouter.
“He expects a lot from his players and just from him talking he has got that aura about him where you know exactly the message he’s getting across to you.”
Ferguson earned a fierce reputation with tall tales of him throwing “tea cups” in anger in the United dressing room when things were not to his liking.
Mourinho may not have the same fearsome approach but, according to Rooney, he is every bit as much a winner as Ferguson.
“He wants to win. He wanted to win tonight,” Rooney said. “He reiterated that at half time. Playing for Manchester United, even if it’s a friendly game you want to win.
“Unfortunately we didn’t but it’s something myself and my family will remember.”
A drab game had little to entertain the 58,597 crowd, who will help Rooney raise a reported £5 million (Dh24.5m) for charity, and, as has been the case throughout the pre-season games, Mourinho used 22 players during the 90 minutes.
The pairing between Rooney and new signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic lasted less than an hour, although there were glimpses of its potential.
“It was a good performance but also minutes on the pitch,” Rooney said. “That’s only a second game for a few of the players in pre-season so it was important we got a few minutes.
“In the first half I thought we played some good stuff and created some chances. Second half was a bit stop-start with all the changes but there are positives we can take out the game tonight and certainly things we can work on.”
Everton manager Ronald Koeman, who completed the £7.1m signing of Aston Villa midfielder Idrissa Gueye on the day before the testimonial, was not impressed with his own team’s efforts at Old Trafford.
“First of all, Idrissa is a player we need, a midfield player who is a little bit different to other midfielders,” he said.
“Tonight, we had good organisation in the team but I expect quality on the ball. Tonight our ball possession wasn’t the level I expect. You need to be more confident if you’re playing against Manchester United.”
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Updated: August 4, 2016 04:00 AM