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Wayne Rooney targets record haul for Manchester United

Wayne Rooney
Rooney is hitting his best form in time for United to make a title charge

Wayne Rooney set his sights on beating his record of 23 goals in one season after scoring all of the goals in Manchester United's 4-0 win over Hull.

The 24-year-old striker ensured United hit the Premier League summit, and he now has 19 goals this term.

He said: "It is the first time I have scored four times in a professional match and it is a great feeling.

"I am really proud of the achievement. It is something special. I'm confident of beating my best season at United."

Rooney added he would be "disappointed" if he did not beat his previous best tally for United.

"I've still got hopefully another 20 games to play, I won't be happy if I don't get more than 23," he added.

We Won The LEAGUE! You? You Just Talk The Talk

"The difference this season is that I've consciously been getting in the box more and trying to put myself in goalscoring situations."

Rooney becomes the first United player to hit four in a game since Ruud van Nistelrooy did it in a Champions League encounter with Sparta Prague in November 2004.

And his superb form has come at just the right time for the champions as they push to try and successfully defend their title.

England boss Fabio Capello will also be delighted to learn of Rooney's performance, which drew warm praise from beaten manager Phil Brown.

"I would have to say he is one of the best strikers in the world just now," said Brown.

"He is someone who is capable of making half chances into a great chance.

Four-goal haul delights Rooney

"When you see him in that form it certainly bodes well for England at the World Cup."

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson was also glowing in his analysis of the striker.

"Without doubt those four goals were the highlight for me," said Ferguson.

"He has been wanting to develop himself as a scorer and there were some terrific finishes today."

"He has always been a main player for us, from the moment he came to the club. He never gets left out."

Rooney's efforts were ably assisted by what was possibly Nani's best performance in three seasons since his £17m arrival from Sporting Lisbon.

And they took the focus away from fan protests at the club's ownership by the Glazer family.

It was recently announced that debts at United's parent company, Red Football Joint Venture, were in excess of £700m - although on Friday, it was revealed that a bond issue had raised £504m.

That figure will enable the club to pay off nearly all of the £509m it owes to international banks, although it faces a £45m-a-year interest bill on the bonds, which mature in 2017.

However, pleas for unity from Ferguson in his programme notes went unheeded, with noisy and regular anti-Glazer chants of varying degrees of vulgarity echoed around the ground.

"There was no dissent against the players," said Ferguson. "It did not have any effect at all."

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see also
Man Utd 4-0 Hull
23 Jan 10 |  Premier League
Rooney was the difference - Brown
23 Jan 10 |  Hull

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