Tuesday 28 February 2017

Owen ruled out with hamstring injury

Rory Smith

Manchester United striker Michael Owen will miss the next few weeks with a hamstring injury.

The former Liverpool player was expected to play in Tuesday night's 3-2 Carling Cup win over Wolverhampton Wanderers after a recent absence with a groin injury. But Owen hurt his hamstring in training and missed the match.

"It's not going great," said the former England international. "I had a bit of a tight groin a while ago and I've trained for a week preparing for the Wolves game, but then I had a setback.

"Unfortunately, because of a training ground injury I'm going to be out for the next few weeks."

Owen watched from the sidelines as Javier Hernandez underlined his status as the fans' new hero but he has warned the Mexican that he cannot afford to rest on his laurels.

"It's obviously early days for him but he's made a really good impression at the club, scored goals in the last couple of games," Owen said.

"He's young, sharp and a good finisher. He seems to be thriving, he's always got a smile on his face, he enjoys his football and the fans have taken to him already.

"So far so good, but, as I know, football changes in a week or whatever. Hopefully it's the start of something good for him, but he needs to keep working hard and keep putting in those performances because at Manchester United that's what it demands -- you score one week, but if you play poorly the next week then you could be out the team so you need to always be on top of your game.

"Thankfully he's playing well at the minute, and long may that continue."

Alex Ferguson signed Hernandez for £7m from Guadalajara before the World Cup -- an astute move as he went on to score two goals, including a brilliant one against Argentina -- and to generally impress.

He has already impressed Wolves manager Mick McCarthy, who thinks he is going to be star.

"I watched him at Stoke on Sunday and forget his goals, his all-round performance was terrific," McCarthy said. "Alex Ferguson knows what he's doing and he wanted to get the winner against us so he brought him on and that's what he did."

Meanwhile, Owen insisted that the Rooney saga that caused such uncertainty over the striker's future had not affected United.

"Everyone seems to be happy now. The club have got a world-class player signed for five years and obviously Wayne's happy and the manager's happy," he said.

"Wayne is obviously ambitious and the club's ambitious. He wouldn't have signed if he had any doubts.

"Cutting out all the rubbish, the main thing is that he's signed.

"It's better having Wayne Rooney in your squad than not, so we're all happy in that way." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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