Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata inspired by Ryan Giggs
Wayne Rooney says Manchester United’s players were inspired by interim boss Ryan Giggs and determined to emerge from a tough week at Old Trafford with a resounding 4-0 victory over Norwich.
Rooney bagged two goals either side of half-time before Juan Mata added two more to put gloss on a fine afternoon’s work for Giggs’ men.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game because Norwich are fighting for their survival,” said Rooney. “Going in one up at half-time was good for us. We knew we would have to score again and once we did we broke them down more easily. It was a comfortable win in the end.
“We’ve had a tough week. We understand there has been a lot of negativity towards us as a team. We were hurt by that and we want to put it right. We know we are better than we’ve shown [this season]. We showed that we are a good team and it’s important for us now to end the season well. That’s what we intend to do."
A club legend taking over as manager in United’s time of need instilled a feel-good factor around Old Trafford, although Rooney said it felt “a bit strange” playing for someone he has called a team-mate for the last decade. “I’ve played with him for the last ten years, but Giggsy has come in and we know he’s a really experienced player and he’s also been a part of the coaching staff for the last season.
“He’s built to be a manager. As a team we can see that. We can see that by the way he has handled himself since he has taken over. It’s fantastic to go out there and get the win for him. Giggsy has all the credentials to be the next boss but that decision is down to the board and down to Giggs.”
Mata, United’s other double goalscorer, was equally inspired by Giggs. “For me, it’s a pleasure to play under Giggs as manager,” he added on Sky Sports. “He’s a proper Manchester United boy. He was born here. For us, it’s a pleasure to be with him at the training ground and at every game. What we will do now is enjoy playing for him until the end of the season.”
Mata’s two close-range finishes added a sheen to the win over Norwich and it was his introduction from the bench that lifted United’s steady performance further still.
“In the first half it was a bit difficult and we played a bit too slow. In the second half I think we showed what Manchester United can do at home. We tried to score, we tried to be a powerful team and we played in the opposition half of the pitch. I think we did that really well.”