Louis van Gaal’s decision to bench Wayne Rooney in the 2-0 defeat against Stoke City has been criticized by the Potters managers as he believes that made the Red Devils weaker.
Bojan Krkic and Marko Arnautovic scored two first half goals to hand United a third consecutive defeat in the premier league. Rooney’s presence in the second half could not inspire a comeback even if the home side were restricted to just one shot on target.
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal faces an uncertain future at Old Trafford after a fourth consecutive defeat in all competitions and Hughes felt the United skipper’s first-half absence helped the hosts.
“I’m sure there were reasons why Wayne didn’t start the game,” Hughes said.
“There’s a lot of thinking that goes into which team you pick as a manager and you go with the one that you think will win the game.
“It’s a tough period over Christmas, we’ve got a tough fixture against Everton, United have got Chelsea so you’ve got to work with your resources.
“Maybe that’s the reason he didn’t start the game. From our point of view, a team without Wayne Rooney is a team that maybe isn’t quite as strong.