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Wayne Rooney set for spell on sidelines

Updated: Wednesday, 17 Feb 2016 18:27 | Comments

Wayne Rooney will not play in the last-16 first-leg meeting with FC Midtjylland
Wayne Rooney will not play in the last-16 first-leg meeting with FC Midtjylland

Wayne Rooney will miss Manchester United's Europa League game at FC Midtjylland after suffering a knee ligament injury that could rule him out for up to two months.

The United captain was not included in the travelling squad United announced on Wednesday morning for Thursday's Europa League last-32 first-leg clash at FC Midtjylland, and boss Louis van Gaal today confirmed Rooney had sustained the injury in Saturday's 2-1 Barclays Premier League defeat at Sunderland.

The Dutchman said: "He was injured in the game against Sunderland and he has a knee problem. We have to wait and see how long that takes."

Put to him that Rooney had played the full duration of the contest at the Stadium of Light, Van Gaal said: "That's typical Wayne.

"He's a guy who wants to go until the end and if he's feeling a pain he doesn't want to go off. He wants to win. That's a fantastic attitude but sometimes it's also bad for his body.

"But you cannot say (if he made the injury worse by staying on) because he didn't know when (exactly) it happened. That's the difficulty."

Defender Matteo Darmian is another absentee after dislocating his shoulder during the 2-1 Barclays Premier League defeat at Sunderland last weekend.

Adnan Januzaj is cup-tied, having played in the competition earlier this season while on loan at Borussia Dortmund.

Youngsters Donald Love, Will Keane, Regan Poole, Joe Riley and James Weir are all part of the United squad.

United fans are planning to protest against being asked to pay £71 per ticket for the meeting with the Danish champions.

Southampton fans paid £22 for tickets when their team travelled to Midtjylland in the playoff round in August and United supporters will display banners to indicate their dissatisfaction.

One United fan, Thomas Kearney, plans to unfurl a banner at the stadium with the words 'WELCOME TO SCAMDINAVIA' on it.

"£71 to watch a Europa League match is extortionate," Andy Mitten, editor of the United We Stand fanzine, said. 

"The combined cost of all three tickets for Manchester United's Champions League away games was only £75. Do they think United fans are three times wealthier than Southampton fans?"

Midtjylland director Cliff Crown, however, defended the price. "We are only a small club in small region of Denmark and this is our cup final so we have to make the most of our opportunity," he told Talksport on Wednesday.

The Danish club's chief executive, Claus Steinlein, also insisted that the price was fair.

"If you look at supply and demand perhaps the price should have been even higher," he told the Daily Telegraph.

"That's the cost of watching a game like this. So I actually believe that we have been very fair and we certainly haven't had any problems selling the tickets."

Manchester United squad [v FC Midtjylland]: De Gea, Romero, Love, McNair, Smalling, Blind, Poole, Riley, Carrick, Herrera, Schneiderlin, Lingard, Pereira, Weir, Mata, Memphis, Martial, Keane.

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