Man Utd's Saha hails Rooney influence

The Frenchman told MUTV: "Wayne (Rooney) was unbelievable, for his movement and the way he controlled the game for us. It was a winning performance."

Saha's near-post volley from Rooney's left-wing cross doubled the Reds' early advantage at the Stadium of Light. Rooney himself had scored the first goal, while the third was fired home by Cristiano Ronaldo - and all this before half-time.

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Saha said: "Going into an atmosphere like the one you can have at Sunderland's stadium, it was very important to make a good start. That's what we did and I think we scored at good moments. I think we were very professional."

United barely eased off after the break, although they added just one more goal to their tally when Nani was fouled in the area. With Ronaldo substituted, Saha stepped up to score the penalty and claim a confidence-boosting double.

"I needed to get back to the basics as a striker which is obviously scoring goals," admitted Saha. "I had a couple of chances today and it's good to be on the scoresheet."

Sir Alex Ferguson said of Saha's two goals: "They will do his confidence the world of good, as will completing the full 90 minutes. I thought he and Wayne linked well. Our front players were a real threat today."

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