Van Gaal lauds ‘special’ Wayne Rooney goal as Man United overtake City

Louis van Gaal heaped the praise on Man United captain Wayne Rooney for his stunning goal which allowed United to leapfrog derby rivals City and cement their top four status.

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The Red Devils are now one point ahead of City, though they have played a game more, after a 3-1 victory over Aston Villa at Old Trafford.

With Arsenal’s earlier 4-1 thrashing of Liverpool, United are now eight points clear of the chasing pack of Champions League hopefuls with only seven games remaining in their season.

“It was a fantastic strike,” said van Gaal about Rooney’s impressive second-half goal (visible at the bottom of the article), according to the Daily Express.

“And he also made an assist for another goal. It was a great result for us.

“Now we have a gap between us and the teams below the top four, and we have to fight against Manchester City next weekend for a place higher in the table. I hope we play ugly and win.

“Nothing is settled in the league yet so I am looking higher.”

Chelsea, meanwhile, sit seven points clear of second-placed Arsenal who themselves are just one point better off than United after a 2-1 win for Jose Mourinho’s side over Stoke City.

But despite their dominant position, van Gaal is refusing to concede the title to the Blues just yet.

“In a normal season Chelsea would win the title but we are putting pressure on through our results – and so are Arsenal. Anything is possible at the moment.”

Rooney goal:

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