Fergie ready to play Rooney


MANCHESTER, September 10- Sir Alex Ferguson is set to keep faith with Wayne Rooney when Manchester United travel to Everton, but he has warned his troubled striker to expect a rough ride at Goodison Park on Saturday.Rooney has been keeping a low profile following lurid allegations about his private life that have raised doubts over whether or not the England striker will feature in Ferguson’s starting line-up on his latest return to his former club this weekend.

The 24-year-old is reported to have paid two prostitutes for sex around the time his wife Coleen was pregnant with the couple’s first child.

Despite the scandal, Rooney excelled for England in midweek, scoring in his side’s comfortable 3-1 victory over Switzerland.

But a return to Merseyside to face Everton is a different proposition altogether and Ferguson must decide if Rooney is mentally prepared for the inevitable abuse home supporters will throw at him.

Everton fans have still not forgiven him for leaving Goodison Park to join United in 2004 and are always determined to make him public enemy number one whenever he faces David Moyes’ side.

Ferguson accepts it will be a hostile environment but has backed not just Rooney but his entire side to deal with whatever comes their way.

The United boss refused to discuss Rooney’s personal life and said: "Let’s put it to bed straight away. I’m not discussing any of my players’ personal lives.

"We know the dangers of Everton. We got slaughtered by them last season, well and truly beaten.

"David (Moyes) is building up a fantastic team there and we expect a very difficult game.

"The atmosphere is always good there. It’s a hard place to go, but it’s also a fantastic place to go and we’ve got a good record there."

Ferguson has also slammed the door firmly shut on suggestions that Welsh winger Ryan Giggs will replace John Toshack as the next Wales manager.

Giggs, who won 64 caps for Wales, was understood to be the Welsh FA’s first choice to succeed Toshack following his depature this week, but Ferguson said: "He’s a player here. It’s not going to happen and it’s impossible.

"I think we have to be selfish here. He’s a Manchester United player and I’m not even prepared to negotiate on the matter.

"At his age he needs all his concentration and energy to be here. He’s an important player for us and we want him here."