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Rooney back for United as title beckons

SoccerNews in English Premier League 11 May 2008

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Wayne Rooney returned to the Manchester United side for Sunday's decisive Premier League clash with Wigan at the JJB Stadium.

The England striker, who had missed United's previous two games with a hip problem and had been expected to start on the bench at best, was named in a full-strength United side as they attempted to wrap up their 17th English title.

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson insisted he was taking “no risk at all” in naming Rooney as well as centreback Nemanja Vidic, who had also missed their last two matches after suffering concussion in last month's defeat at Chelsea.

“This is an occasion when the players who have done the job all season deserve to be there,” Ferguson said.

Wigan, unbeaten in their last five matches, made one change to the side that defeated Aston Villa last weekend, with Maynor Figueroa replacing Kevin Kilbane.

United went into Sunday's final round of matches on the same number of points as title rivals Chelsea.

But their huge advantage in terms of goal difference means they only need to match Chelsea's result at home to Bolton to be crowned champions for the tenth time under Ferguson.

Chelsea were without first-choice centreback Ricardo Carvalho, who suffered a back injury against Newcastle on Monday and was replaced by Brazilian international Alex.

Manager Avram Grant named a front three of Joe Cole, Didier Drogba and Florent Malouda with Nicolas Anelka barred from playing against his former club.

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