Champions League: Rooney back to his best

Champions League: Rooney back to his best

GROUP A

MAN UNITED 1 (Inigo Martinez 2-og)

REAL SOCIEDAD 0

Wayne Rooney spent much of last season being offended.

He was offended that Sir Alex Ferguson kept substituting him midway through games.

He was offended that supporters kept groaning whenever he misplaced a pass.

He was offended that analysts kept bemoaning the paucity of his contribution.

Perhaps, to some extent, he was right to be dismayed at the level of criticism. People are certainly far harsher on Rooney than they are to other underperforming players.

But that is because we know, deep down, that he can play like this. Rooney ran the show against Real Sociedad from the first moment to the last on Thursday morning (Singapore time).

This was the Rooney that we all knew was in there somewhere.

The Rooney that was released when he finally decided to duck out of the speculation and the backstage machinations. When he decided to become a footballer again.

David Moyes has been widely criticised for his slow start to life at Old Trafford, but Rooney is one of his few success stories.

It could have all been so different.

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