Wayne Rooney inspired Manchester United to a 3-2 win over AS Roma in the first match of the pre-season International Champions Cup tournament at Sports Authority Field, Denver. The England striker scored twice and set up a third for Juan Mata as United went in at the break 3-0 up.
United manager Louis van Gaal made nine changes at the interval and Roma scored twice in the second half, with Miralem Pjanic netting a wonder goal that embarrassed United goalkeeper Ben Amos, and Francesco Totti converting from the penalty spot with four minutes remaining.
Van Gaal looked far from happy at the final whistle despite the three points, because in truth his United side were second best for long stretches of the game.
Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata (8) kicks and scores in the first half against AS Roma at Sports Authority …
'2 CHANCE! Roma striker Mattia Destro gets in behind the United defence and his lob beats United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone but bounces over the bar.
'35 GOAL!! Roma 0-1 Manchester United. And what a goal from the previously anonymous Rooney. The England man takes two touches then shoots across his body and into the top corner of goal from 25 yards!
'38 GOAL!! Roma 0-2 Manchester United. Wayne Rooney floats a long ball over the top and Juan Mata takes the ball on the run before chipping Skorupski to net.
'44 GOAL!! Roma 0-3 Manchester United. Herrera plays a pass to Welbeck, and the England striker is pulled down by Urby Emanuelson. And Rooney blasts home the penalty. What a ten minutes from Rooney!
'51 CHANCE Adem Ljajic beats Cleverley easily down the left and crosses, but an unmarked Florenzi shoots wide. Smalling was guilty of stepping off the Roma player too much there.
'75 GOAL!! Roma 1-3 Manchester United. Miralem Pjanic gets the ball in his own half and chips Amos from 60 yards! That was Roma's first shot on target.
'88 GOAL!! Roma 2-3 Manchester United. Totti slams the penalty past Amos, who is about five yards off his goal-line!
TALKING POINT: The look on Louis van Gaal's face
The Manchester United manager does not hide his feelings when angry or disappointed. And in Denver, the Dutchman looked far from happy. Rooney aside, United were pretty poor, with Ashley Young and Nani particularly anonymous. The US television station cut to Van Gaal after Amos was lobbed by Pjanic from 60 yards - it's fair to say that LVG won't be starting Amos this season if that expression was anything to go by.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Wayne Rooney (Manchester United): The England striker looked uninterested and unfit for the first 35 minutes, but he was unplayable the following ten. His goal was a vintage strike from 25 yards, and his assist for Mata was as brilliant. Rooney remains a genuine game-changer. How England manager Roy Hodgson must rue that he did not show that ability during the World Cup in Brazil.
Roma: Skorupski 6, Calabresi 6, Benatia 7, Romagnoli 6, Emanuelson 6, Ucan 6, Keita 6, Paredes 6; Iturbe 6, Destro 7, Florenzi 7 Subs: Somma 6, Castan 7, Cole 7, Nainggolan 7, Ljajic 8, Pjanic 8, Balasa 6, Sanabria 6, Borriello 7, Totti 7.
Manchester United: Johnstone 6, Jones 6, Evans 6, Blackett 6, Valencia 5, Cleverley 7, Herrera 6, James 6, Welbeck 7, Mata 7, Rooney 9. Subs: Amos 4, M Keane 5, Smalling 5, Young 5, Hernandez 6, Kagawa 6, Shaw 6, W Keane 6, Lingard 6, Nani 5.
- Sports & Recreation
- Wayne Rooney
- Manchester United
- Miralem Pjanic
- Juan Mata
- Francesco Totti