‘Wayne Rooney can show he has put his troubles well behind him’ - Les Ferdinand analyses the Manchester United & Barcelona strikers

The former England striker, now a coach at Tottenham, believes Chicharito can be Sir Alex Ferguson's danger man and expects some brilliance from the wonderful Lionel Messi
By Amar Singh

Former England striker Les Ferdinand believes Wayne Rooney has the perfect chance to show the world he has put his troubles behind him in the Champions League final between Barcelona and Manchester United on Saturday.

Rooney looked set to leave Old Trafford earlier this season after stating his intentions to quit the club, before later signing a new contract and producing some of the best form of his career.

Now an attacking coach with Tottenham, Ferdinand expects Rooney to be utilised in a way that best suits Sir Alex Ferguson's side tactically against the Spanish champions.

The former Spurs, Newcastle and QPR striker analyses all the key strikers on show at Wembley Stadium on Saturday evening with Goal.com UK, eagerly anticipating a touch of magic from a certain Argentinian forward.

Ferdinand on... David Villa

"He couldn't have had a better start to his season at Barca, but in the second half of the season he has fallen off the pace a little.

"Because Barca don't really play with an out and out frontman, Villa comes in from the left and is perhaps less effective than he was for Valencia, but Villa is used to the big stage and I don't expect him to go missing."

On... Lionel Messi

"Just an extraordinary player who has had an extraordinary season. He got pipped to the Pichichi by Ronaldo but I think he is much more of a team player than Ronaldo.

"How do Manchester United cope with him is the million dollar question. We will see some brilliance from Messi tonight, without a doubt."

On... Chicharito

"The surprise package of the season, he's proved his worth for the team and will be a danger man for Man United tonight."

On... Wayne Rooney

"He's been the Rooney of old since he signed this contract, and is such an intelligent player.

"He will play wherever it is advantageous for Man United tonight. Maybe he will drop deep, or maybe he will be more advanced, the fact is that he can do a job and tonight is the perfect chance for him to show that he has put his troubles well behind him."

On... Dimitar Berbatov

"He must think: 'What more can I do?' He had a great first half to the season and as a former striker I can understand his frustrations at not getting in the team.

"Chicharito has done so well that you wouldn't begrudge him his starting place."

On... Michael Owen

"He's a superstar goal scorer. If Man United need a goal I can see Sir Alex turning to Owen as opposed to Berbatov.

"He is still a threat and has those striking instincts even if he's not as quick as he used to be."

Les Ferdinand was speaking as a guest of Heineken at the Champions League final between Barcelona and Manchester United.

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