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Van Gaal lauds Rooney character

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal hailed the mentality of Wayne Rooney after the England captain netted a treble in Wednesday’s UEFA Champions League victory over Club Brugge.

Prior to the second leg of the play-off tie in Belgium, Rooney had gone 10 games without finding the net for United.

But his hat-trick, added to by Ander Herrera’s goal, sealed a comprehensive win, which was only tainted slightly by Javier Hernandez’s late penalty miss as the Mexican lost his footing at the point of contact.

“I’m very happy for him [Rooney],” Van Gaal told BT Sport.

“He was generous to give the ball to ‘Chica’ [Hernandez], but it was a slip I think.

“He [Rooney] has the best mentality that you can imagine and such players with that level will always come back.”

United’s 7-1 aggregate victory secured their place in Thursday’s draw in Monaco, but Van Gaal says he will not watch, and is not afraid of potentially being paired with former clubs Bayern Munich or Barcelona.

“I don’t think they want to draw us,” he said with a smile.

“I shall watch the second team because eight players play and because I think that’s more important because I can’t do anything to have any influence in the draw.

“This was a glorious night, it’s not easy to do this what we have done but Swansea City [away on Sunday] is the most important match now.”

Wed 26 Aug, 2015
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