Moyes claims Rooney needed to toughen up

Ahead of Sunday’s Manchester derby at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, Man Utd boss David Moyes has said that striker Wayne Rooney had ‘gone soft’ in the months before he took over from Sir Alex Ferguson, reports the Daily Telegraph.

During the summer, Rooney was targeted by rivals Chelsea, amid widespread rumours that he wanted to leave the club. However, the 27-year-old has remained, and has made a good start to the new season, scoring three goals in his last two games.

And Moyes has revealed that he looked to restore Rooney’s aggression in training. He told MUTV: ‘When I came I thought he had gone a bit soft. I thought he had to get back to being a bit more aggressive. We are challenging him to be that.’

Rooney scored his 200th Manchester United goal in the Champions League win over Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday, while strike partner Robin van Persie has got 36 goals in 54 appearances since joining last summer.

On his attempts to strengthen their partnership, Moyes added: ‘We want to try and make it a partnership where people are saying ‘my goodness, this is tough to play against’. We’re trying to get something which we know to be lethal.’

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