News, views and rumours relating to Manchester United in the past 24 hours.
In team news, Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney looks likely to miss United’s trip to Loftus Road where they face Premier League basement side Queen’s Park Rangers this Saturday.
QPR striker Loic Remy is also expected to be sidelined for the fixture.
Rooney did, however, feature in training with the United squad this week – surprising he played in defence I training ground kick about and even put in a strong challenge on captain Nemanja Vidic.
Phil Jones and Paul Scholes are still unavailable for selection by manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
The squad sheets have been released and the expected United starting lineup is:
De Gea-Rafael-Ferdinand-Evans-Evra-Carrick-Cleverley-Welbeck-Young-Valencia-Van Persie
Paul Scholes has been sent to see a specialist regarding his knee injury that has kept him out of the team for the last 5 games, revealed Ferguson:
"Paul has had a little knee injury which we sent him to a specialist for," noted the boss. "It is a little bit floating in the knee which he has had for many years.
Meanwhile, ManUtd.com have put together a feature outlining the history between Ferguson and QPR manager Harry Redknapp who have enjoyed what they describe as some ‘memorable tussles’ over the years.
Ferguson also tussled with Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini this week as he effectively told the Italian coach to ‘Drop the mind games’ as The Manchester Evening News reports today.
In transfer news, Ferguson has also pleaded with United winger Nani to sign a new contract to keep him at Old Trafford.
“I would prefer to keep him. I think with Nani he wants to be guaranteed first-team football, but he can guarantee that. His performance the other night can guarantee that,” admitted the Scot.
“We are trying our best because he is such a match-winning player.”
Meanwhile, The Express claims that United will face competition from AC Milan in their reported ‘chase’ to capture Paris Saint-Germain’s Marco Verratti this summer.
According to the Daily Star, United are preparing a £55 million bid to bring Cristiano Ronaldo back to Old Trafford this summer.
The Real Madrid superstar was linked with a return to Manchester in January and, according to the report, the player’s representatives are keen on the move because of lucrative commercial ventures that could tie in with a move back to the Premier League.
Moving in the other direction, according to the Manchester Evening News, could be Real Madrid target and United goalkeeper David De Gea.
The former Athletico Madrid youngster impressed at the Santiago Bernabeu earlier this month and could rewarded for his stellar performance with a move back to the Spanish capital.
In other news, incoming chief executive Ed Woodward will have ‘a tough act to follow’ in outgoing David Gill, according to this assessment of Gill’s career.
Elsewhere former United legend and Molde manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer claims he is in ‘no rush’ to move back to the Premier League as a coach.
"We've decided that, as a family, we'd still like to live in Norway," he told the BBC's World Football programme.
Finally, former United star Johnny Downie passed away earlier this week at the age of 87. He was a member of the club’s first post-war championship-winning side and made 116 appearances for United, scoring 35 goals.
He was signed in March 1949 for a fee of £18,000 by Sir Matt Busby.
image: © eirikref