Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney has charged his teammates to do more to save embattled manager Louis van Gaal.
United’s poor run this season took another turn for the worse following the 2-1 loss to Sunderland in the Premier League over the weekend and Rooney, who has a complete turnaround, scoring seven goals in nine games, has some sympathy for his manager.
“It’s a very good group of players. At times it’s been frustrating for us as we’ve under-performed,” he said.
“And actually the manager has taken a lot of stick for some performances. It’s down to us, we’re players and we have to perform.
“At times this season we haven’t done that. In terms of that, we’ve probably got off quite lightly and the manager has taken a lot of it.
“But we’re going on the pitch. We have to create chances and win games and we haven’t done that enough this season.”
United are currently fifth on the table, but six points off fourth place and Rooney admits their chances of playing in the Champions League are very slim.
The only other way they have of making the Champions League next season other than finishing in the top four will be to win the Europa League and they play Midtjylland in the round of 32 on Thursday night in the first leg.
He said: “The important thing now, I feel, is to win trophies again this season. It’s been a few years since we won a trophy.
“This is more or less a new team so for ourselves, as a team, we need to win something. The fans want to see us win something again.
“Obviously the Champions League is massive for this club and it was disappointing to go out of it.
“We’ll keep going in the league, keep trying. But our main aim has to be to make sure we can get in that top four.
“And then the Europa League, it would be great if we can win that. It’s not where we wanted to be at the start of the season.
“But it’s where we’ve found ourselves so why not go and try to win it.”