Wayne Rooney insists the future is bright for Manchester United despite their inconsistent form under manager Louis van Gaal.
United throw away a 3-1 lead against Leicester at the weekend to lose 5-3 and they stand 12th in the Premier League after five matches, already eight points behind leaders Chelsea.
Expectations of a major improvement after last season’s seventh-placed finish have been formed on the basis of the appointment of the experienced Van Gaal and the recruitment of players including Angel Di Maria, Daley Blind, Radamel Falcao, Luke Shaw and Ander Herrera.
And Rooney is convinced the blossoming of the team will materialise, taking issue with those doubting United’s ability to respond to their current frustration.
Rooney wrote on his Facebook page:
“There seems to be a lot of people who have written us off because of Sunday’s result but I don’t see it that way.
“When I look around our dressing room and see the quality we have and the manager’s unbelievable attention to detail I have no doubts this team will be successful.”
Neville awaits reinforcements
Earlier, former United defender Phil Neville predicted this summer’s big spending would need to be repeated in future transfer windows before the club can again be seen as title contenders.
United have struggled in central defence this season as Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Jonny Evans battle for form and fitness and youngster Tyler Blackett seeks to establish himself. And Neville believes that is the biggest issue still to be addressed.
“I know United have spent £150 million,” Neville told BBC Radio 5 live. “I think there’s another two transfer windows of similar amounts of money needed – maybe £100 million – before they can even think about winning the title.
“There are still key positions in the team that need filling. I think the centre-back position is obviously the key area. Holding midfield or centre midfield needs addressing too. There were no world-class centre-backs out there (this summer). I think that’s why in the next two transfer windows, United might still be looking for that world-class defender.”
However, he backed England internationals Jones and Smalling to eventually prove their worth to the club.
“I am certain Chris Smalling will come good and I have full faith in Phil Jones as well,” Neville said. “They’ve bought of a lot of foreign players, you don’t get rid of your English spine.”