Fergie: World Cup show was so poor

The spotlight is back on Wayne Rooney for Sunday’s Community Shield

encounter with Chelsea at Wembley as the striker looks to find the

form that brought him 34 goals for Manchester United last term. Yet

Rooney was totally unable to reproduce that form in South Africa,

returning home without managing a goal and adding his name to a

list, including Fernando Torres, Nicolas Anelka, Kaka and Robin van

Persie, of big-name attacking talents who failed to make their

mark. As someone who has never hidden his belief that the Champions

Leae boasts greater quality than the World Cup, Ferguson was not

entirely surprised. He believes you have to go back to the 1986

tournament in Mexico – when he managed Scotland – for the last

decent World Cup. “A lot of teams and a lot of players were

disappointing at the World Cup,” he said. “There is only one team

who took credit and that was Spain. They kept a reasonable momentum

and playing style throughout the tournament. “The rest were

spasmodic or disappointing in their form and so were some of their

best players. That just went towards what was a poor tournament.

“There could be a lot of reasons for that and expectation does come

into it. “Everyone always looks forward to the World Cup as if it

is going to be the greatest thing ever but you have to go back to

Mexico 1986 for the last good one.” Rooney’s past feats are such

that no-one seriously doubts his abilities, although Ferguson has

vowed to play a long game with all his World Cup performers. Both

Rooney and Nemanja Vidic will play some part in the weekend

showpiece after making their comebacks in Dublin on Wednesday, but

Patrice Evra will not be involved. Such a pivotal figure in the

farcical French campaign and condemned for his part in the strike

that followed Anelka’s dismissal from the camp by coach Raymond

Domenech, Evra has been given extra time off by Ferguson to let his

body recover from what has been an arduous few years. “We decided

to give Patrice more rest,” confirmed Ferguson. “Over the last five

years he has played an average of 55 games a year. “This summer he

has had the World Cup as well so we felt he deserved another week’s

rest. “He started training yesterday and won’t be available until

into the season.”