Milan manager Leonardo described Wayne Rooney as the “complete player” after the Manchester United striker’s part in the 4-0 demolition of his Serie A side in their Champions League last-16 clash at Old Trafford.
Rooney, who scored twice in United’s 3-2 first-leg victory at San Siro, notched another double as Sir Alex Ferguson’s team booked their place in the quarter-finals of the Champions League.
“I think this year Rooney can grow up even more,”Leonardo said following his side’s 7-2 aggregate defeat. “He’s the complete player; strong, fast and he works hard.”
“He does a lot of incredible movement and he’s playing in a system that is perfect for him. United play at such speed and often on the counter-attack. That system, with Rooney, is incredible.”
Ji-Sung Park and Darren Fletcher completed the scoring at Old Trafford in a scintillating, attacking performance that left manager Ferguson in bullish mood.
“When we play like that we are very difficult to compete against,” Ferguson said. “With that team I’ve got, it doesn’t matter who we play next.”
The United boss added to the plaudits for Rooney and said that new training routines had assisted the striker this season.
“He’s improved his movement in the box but he has also been practising a lot more this season than ever before,” Ferguson said. “He’s putting in extra work after training and I think you get the rewards of that. We try to encourage them all to do that. We’ve set little practices for a lot of players and they’re responding to it.”
Milan midfielder David Beckham hailed Wayne Rooney as one of the best players in the world.
Beckham said: “Wayne is such an exceptional talent.
“Without a doubt he is one of the best players, if not the best, in the world at the moment with Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.”