Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal has revealed that club captain Wayne Rooney is happy in the midfield role that has been given to him.

Rooney has been given a deeper role than usual which has led to him not finding the net for nine games. Van Gaal however said that he is looking for balance in the team and Rooney has provided that so far, “I am looking for balance and I need balance in midfield.

“When I play with [Adnan] Januzaj and [Angel] Di Maria in the midfield positions, then you need a certain balance for that kind of creative player.

“So, when you have these creative players, and also [Radamel] Falcao and [Robin] van Persie are creative players, then you have four creative players and you have to look for balance in your team.”

Van Gaal went on to add that Rooney isn’t unhappy with the role, “He is happy. Otherwise, he should come to me and say: ‘I am not happy’, but he never does.

“He is always friendly to me and wants to perform what I want.

“That is what I see, but, when the whole world is writing that he has to be in the striker’s position, he shall be thinking ‘ hey’ as he is human.”

Van Gaal has played a diamond formation his last three games with Wayne Rooney playing a deeper and wider position than usual and Di Maria being deployed at the tip of the diamond. Rooney has scored eight goals so far in the league, but his last goal came against Newcastle United on Boxing day when United won 3-1. Rooney was deployed behind the strikers in that game.

Van Gaal will buy a midfielder in the summer

The Dutchman also responded positively to when he was asked if he was going to sign a midfielder in the summer. Van Gaal said “off course” when he was asked if it was his priority to sign a striker.

Manchester United travel to Preston in the last 16 tie of the FA Cup and the game could be a potential banana skin for United who haven’t convinced everyone with their football.

A win will take then into the last eight and considering the absence of Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham, Van Gaal’s side have a good chance to win their first trophy in over two years. However, Preston will not be an easy place to go to.