Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini admits it would be "difficult" for his side to sign Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney this summer.
Rooney started on the substitutes’ bench for United’s recent Champions League defeat to Real Madrid, sparking speculation that the 27-year-old could be on his way out of Old Trafford at the end of the season.
Mancini, however, believes the striker will not be affected by the decision to leave him out of the starting line-up and a summer exit is unlikely.
"I think that Rooney is one of the best strikers in Europe but I think it is difficult he can leave Manchester United,” Mancini told reporters.
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"I don't know. I don't know this situation. I can understand maybe Rooney would be upset if he didn't play but these are things that can happen in every team. After one week it is finished."
Reports have suggested that forward Eden Dzeko’s future at City could determine a possible bid for Rooney - with Borussia Dortmund seemingly ruling out a future move - and Mancini has kept the door open for a summer exit, although he claims he is unaware of interest from the Bundesliga side..
The 48-year-old said: "At the moment, there is nothing. In the end, maybe, I don't know. In the summer, it could be possible.
"Dzeko player is an important player for us. We want that he stays here."