Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney lifted the Old Trafford faithful on Tuesday night as he ended their wait for a goal with this effort against CSKA Moscow to secure a 1-0 win.
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The 30-year-old’s headed effort took him to 237 goals for United, with only Sir Bobby Charlton scoring more for the club, while it also ended a wait of 404 minutes for a goal after the Red Devils had suffered three consecutive goalless draws prior to Tuesday night’s encounter.
United endured a bitterly frustrating night against the Russian side for the most part, as although they played with better tempo and moved the ball upfield with purpose compared to their uninspiring performances in recent weeks, they couldn’t find a breakthrough.
However, Rooney ensured that they picked up a crucial win over their rivals in Group B as the win took them top of the standings with just two games remaining in the group stages.
The England international has also faced significant criticism in recent weeks as he struggles to produce as Louis van Gaal’s main striker, as noted by The Daily Mail.
While he struggled again for long periods against CSKA, he made a vital contribution as Jesse Lingard produced a clever assist to finally find a way past the visitors.
Van Gaal’s side face West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford on Saturday hoping to build on this result, although it remains to be seen whether or not the Dutchman sticks with the same team.
Michael Carrick was instrumental in midfield as his direct passing moved them quicker into the attacking phase, and the 34-year-old could be integral to United’s hopes of finding the net with greater regularity in the coming weeks.