OTELUL GALATI 0, MANCHESTER UNITED 2.
Wayne Rooney finally ignited Manchester United’s faltering Champions League campaign in Romania against Otelul Galati.
The striker scored two second-half penalties as the Reds recorded their first win in the group stage to prevent them making their worst-ever start in the competition.
Suddenly thanks to Rooney’s double, United are in a far healthier position at this midway point of the initial phase with one win and two draws from their three games.
And the match also marked another milestone in Rooney’s career as he equalled Michael Owen’s record of 27 Champions League goals, the highest number scored by an Englishman.
It looked as though it might be another frustrating night as United didn’t make the breakthrough until midway through the second half.
And by that time they had been reduced to 10 men following Nemanja Vidic’s harsh sending off for a challenge on Gabriel Giurgiu which most thought warranted only a yellow card. It was the central defender’s first appearance since the opening day of the season.
United were left to play the final 34 minutes with one less player and at that stage a win looked highly improbable.
Cometh the hour, cometh the man and Rooney won the penalty as his cross from the left was handled by Otelul captain Sergiu Costin.
Rooney, who had embarrassingly missed from the spot against Arsenal, made no mistake this time as he sent goalkeeper Gravohac the wrong way.
Rooney made sure of victory after being tripped by Liviu Antal in stoppage time as he picked himself to make no mistake with another emphatic finish from the spot with his 11th goal of the season.