Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal is ready to unleash striker Robin van Persie in the final few games of the season after Wayne Rooney tweaked his knee ligaments and is a doubt for the remaining weeks, according to the Daily Star.
Rooney, 29, hurt himself against Everton at the weekend during the Red Devils’ 3-0 defeat at Goodison Park and had to be replaced during the second half.
It is now likely that he’ll miss the final four games of the season against West Bromwich Albion, Crystal Palace, Arsenal and Hull City.
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It is a favourable run-in for United, who don’t have much pressure on them with Liverpool, Southampton and Tottenham all unlikely to put up a late challenge for fourth place, so Louis van Gaal and his players can coast to the finish line with the Red Devils only requiring two more wins to guarantee a top-four finish.
The most difficult game they have remaining comes against Arsenal in the penultimate fixture of the season.
The result of that game could determine who finishes where in the top four. The Gunners have won 10 of their 13 league games in 2015 and eight of their last nine, so they will be a difficult test, especially considering only Chelsea (68) and Manchester City (70) have scored more goals than Arsenal (63) this season.
Robin van Persie has 10 goals himself in the Premier League this season, trailing United’s top scorer – Rooney – by two, so the Dutchman, who is effectively fighting for his future in the next remaining games, will be looking to oust his skipper at the top of those charts in the coming weeks.
The striker hasn’t started a Premier League game for United since the 2-1 defeat at Swansea on February 21.