Willing Wayne was misused – Fergie

Rooney took his outstanding domestic performances for United onto

the European stage on Tuesday night with his brilliant two-goal

performance against AC Milan in the San Siro. Such are the high

standards now being constantly achieved by the 24-year-old that

many pundits are claiming he deserves to be ranked alongside Kaka,

Lionel Messi and former team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo, who are widely

acknowledged to be the best three players on the planet. It is

perhaps no surprise Rooney is blossoming in his preferred attacking

role following Ronaldo’s exit for Real Madrid last summer. With

Ronaldo increasingly reluctant to defend, Ferguson accepts he took

advantage of Rooney’s willingness to work as he tried to forge

another title-winning side. “We probably didn’t use him properly

last season,” Ferguson told US-based radio station Sirius. “We

probably exploited his eagerness and enthusiasm to play anywhere.

But we know his strengths, we know where he’s best and that’s where

we’re using him this season.” Ahead of the Milan game, Ferguson

gave the impression of being uncomfortable with all the high praise

being heaped on Rooney this season when he argued the former

Everton star was being afforded ‘God-like’ status. Yet even he has

to agree Rooney is something special. “We talk about world-class

players and I think that’s a misused quote a lot of the time but,

when you see his performances of late, you know you’re talking

about a really world-class player,” said Ferguson. “I always said

to him that to be a world-class forward you need to have a really

consistent goal performance. “He is now on 25 goals and there are

still 14 or 15 matches to go, maybe more depending on how we do in

Europe. “So it does put him in the frame of not just being a great

player but also a great goal-scorer.”