Marcos Rojo has been granted permission to begin his Manchester United career, after finally being granted a permit to work in England.
Louis van Gaal spent £16million of his budget on the Sporting Lisbon defender on 20 August, since when the Reds have drawn at Sunderland and Burnley in the Premier League and crashed out of the League Cup at League One club MK Dons. Rojo was ineligible to be considered for any of these matches, due to a hold-up with his work permit.
According to the BBC, this was due to a criminal incident back in his homeland of Argentina four years ago, yet the 24-year-old is said to strongly deny any wrongdoings. The UK Border Agency have now granted Rojo the necessary permit to play his trade in England, and he is expected to make his debut against Queens Park Rangers a week on Sunday.
The defender has been a regular in the Argentine side for much of the past three years, having now earned 28 international caps for his country. He rose to prominence in the World Cup Finals in the summer, when he helped Alejandro Sabella’s team reach the final, and he was also involved in the 4-2 friendly win against Germany on Wednesday night.
“I am desperate to get onto the field and play because I have not been able to step onto Old Trafford,” Rojo told the media in his homeland. “My has life changed a lot. I am very happy to be at Manchester United, a top team in the world, sharing a dressing room with players like [Wayne] Rooney, [Robin] van Persie, [Angel] di Maria and now [Radamel] Falcao.”
United are still working on a work permit for Falcao, but fully expect this to be in place for the Colombian to also make his debut against Harry Redknapp’s side. Yet despite his reputation as one of the best strikers in world football, the former Atletico Madrid has been warned by one of his new team-mates that he must fight for a place in van Gaal’s side.
“I welcome his arrival, he makes us better,” said Holland international van Persie, who will also no doubt expect to start against QPR at Old Trafford. “At a top club you should always go for the best, which also fits my philosophy. Falcao must fight for his place, as I also have to. We must duke with Wayne Rooney and James Wilson to see who is playing.”
United fans, do you expect van Gaal to abandon his 3-5-2 formation against QPR? And which two strikers would you pick? Have your say by joining in the discussion below!