Selection dilemma woe for Fergie

Manchester United

Sir Alex Ferguson insists it has never been easy leaving players out at Manchester United.

Whilst Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney are acknowledged to be automatic choices in Ferguson’s first-choice starting XI, compelling evidence has been provided of alternative options over the past seven days. Javier Hernandez might struggle to get his first United hat-trick but there is little doubt the Mexican’s introduction changed the entire course of last week’s game at Aston Villa.

Then on Wednesday, Danny Welbeck scored England’s equaliser in their 4-2 defeat in Sweden, thus confirming his status as the Three Lions’ top scorer during 2012. Yet, to start with all four at Norwich on Saturday is impossible, meaning disappointment for someone is inevitable.

However, even in an era where egos tend to be inflated much more than before, and therefore deflation much more obvious, Ferguson can see no change to the situation he has always had to face. The Scot said: “It is no harder. Teddy Sheringham was never happy being left out. Andy Cole certainly wasn’t. He would grump and groan for three days because he wanted to play all the time.

“I have no problem with that. The important thing is do have to feel as though you are being fair and that they are making a contribution over the course of the season.

“That is what the four of them did (in 1999). They all scored such important goals. The legend of Sheringham and Solskjaer scoring the goals in Barcelona will always remain. You can’t dismiss that.”