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Last Updated: Saturday, 28 August, 2004, 10:08 GMT 11:08 UK
Ferguson excited by Rooney
Sir Alex Ferguson insists Manchester United would be as good as his Treble winning side of 1999 if they can clinch the signing of Wayne Rooney.

"If we do sign him I will be very happy with the squad we have got," he said.

"I believe it will be just as strong as we had in 1999. Both squads have really good talent, although it is difficult to compare players.

"But what I will have again is four top strikers to chose from. It will give us strength and a lot of options."

United claimed a famous last-gasp victory in the final of the 1999 Champions League when they scored two late goals to break Bayern Munich hearts.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Teddy Sheringham scored on the night with Andy Cole and Dwight Yorke making up the rest of United's striking quartet during a campaign which also saw them claim the Premiership title and FA Cup.

Without Sir Alex's guidance the players from my time would not have grown up as we have done
Former Man Utd star David Beckham

If Rooney does sign for United from Everton he will join Ruud van Nistelrooy, Louis Saha and Alan Smith at Old Trafford.

And ex-United midfielder David Beckham believes his England team-mate Rooney should choose United ahead of Newcastle who are battling the Old Trafford outfit for the 18-year-old's signature.

Beckham, now at Real Madrid, says Ferguson would give Rooney the guidance he needs while Magpies boss Bobby Robson would also help the teenager's career.

He said: "You have two great managers who can look after any player.

"They don't come any better than the two managers who are at those teams, so he'll be in good hands wherever he goes.

Everton striker Wayne Rooney
Will Wayne Rooney choose Newcastle or Man Utd?

"(Alex Ferguson) brought me into the team and gave me the chance when others wouldn't have done so, when he just put all the youngsters in and had faith in us.

"We think we helped the club win trophies and without Alex Ferguson's guidance, we wouldn't have grown up as we have done."

He added: "I think when players go through a tough time, he is very strong and believes that players at his team are looked after by the manager.

"When you have played badly, he will criticise you to your face, but never to the media, that is what he is like. "

United's squad has been depleted because of injuries, players away on international duty and Rio Ferdinand still serving a suspension for missing a drugs test.

But Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says United will be a bigger danger the Highbury club's title ambitions if rival Ferguson lands Rooney and key players return to the side.

"If United get Rio Ferdinand back, Rooney in, Gabriel Heinze back, suddely they look a lot stronger on paper.

"But I am not worried about United trying to sign Rooney.

"I do not expect my opponents to sit relaxing, looking at us cruise through the league."

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