Manchester United boss admitted after the Champions League defeat to Bayern Munich that Wayne Rooney was struggling for fitness.
Manchester United boss David Moyes admitted after the loss at the Allianz Arena that Wayne Rooney appeared unfit.
The Englishman missed the 4-0 win over Newcastle at the weekend with a foot injury, and it was claimed in the lead-up to the Bayern game that he would require an injection in order to play.
Hesitant on an early first half chance, Rooney went onto miss a sitter from inside the box with the score at 1-1 in the second, failing to even fire his shot on or off target.
Moyes admitted after the game that the forward was 'struggling'.
Moyes on injured Rooney: "I felt at times tonight he was having a struggle striking the ball (cleanly) but he's such a vital player for us'— Henry Winter (@henrywinter) April 9, 2014
Yet this begs the question as to why Rooney was left on the pitch while clearly not 100 per cent. Late on it was Danny Welbeck who was withdrawn rather than his teammate, who lasted 90 minutes.
By this point Javier Hernandez had already been brought on, but if Moyes was really so concerned as to Rooney, he should not have taken him off earlier, even at half-time.
Had that second half chance fallen to Mexican international Hernandez, the chances of the ball rippling the back of the net would surely have increased.
It's easy of course to be wise after the event, and Moyes may not have realised quite how bad Rooney's fitness troubles were until he fluffed that late chance.
Yet as the manager who has close access to the player, nobody will have had the chance to assess him quite like Moyes.
With his uncertainty clear after United conceded, his decision regarding Rooney may just be the most perplexing of the lot, and his judgement will continue to be questioned.