Sports Xtra

Mourinho tells Rooney he can leave United


Jose Mourinho has told Wayne Rooney he is not part of his first-team plans at Manchester United, and can leave if he wishes.

In a back-page exclusive for The Sun, Neil Custis reveals that the United manager ‘has informed Rooney’s advisers’ that the club captain is no longer guaranteed a starting place.

The forward was recently benched for four consecutive games as he continued to struggle for form, but was restored to the starting line-up as a striker in the 4-1 Europa League win over Fenerbahce last week.

He did not score in that game, and did not take either of the two penalties United were awarded.

Many expected the 31-year-old to return to the bench for the subsequent Premier League game against Chelsea, but he was ruled out through injury.

According to Custis, while Mourinho has no plans to sell Rooney, he has told him that he is free to leave if he wishes to seek first-team football elsewhere.