Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney believes new manager Jose Mourinho’s methods are already bearing fruit ahead of his side’s Premier League trip to Hull City on Saturday.
United have won their two opening games, against Bournemouth and Southampton, and go into the weekend level on points with Manchester City, Chelsea and, unexpectedly, Hull at the head of the table.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has scored four goals in three games and with world-record returnee Paul Pogba impressing in the 2-0 win over Southampton, Rooney feels United have hit the ground running.
“We, as players, have to adapt to what the manager wants us to do in our preparations throughout the week and, on match-days, we try to take the game plan of the manager onto the pitch,” he said.
“It’s what we’ve tried to do and, fortunately, we’ve started the season well. We’ve prepared well this week so we’re hoping that continues.
“The signings we’ve made this season have been really good signings. They’ve settled in really quickly and you’ve seen the impact they’ve had on the pitch already.”
While City, United and Chelsea’s presence in the top four gives the lead places in the Premier League standings a familiar look, Hull’s strong start to the season has surprised everyone.
After Steve Bruce quit as manager and Hull were left with only 13 senior players, the East Yorkshire club were installed as the bookmakers’ favourites to go down.
But they defied the odds to stun champions Leicester City 2-1 on the season’s opening day and followed that up with a 2-0 success at Swansea City.
One of Bruce’s principle reasons for leaving was frustration over the club’s lack of transfer activity and caretaker coach Mike Phelan says there will be no new faces on show at the KCOM Stadium on Saturday.
“It’s the same old, same old,” said Phelan, who spent 20 years at United as a player, coach and assistant manager under Alex Ferguson.
“Nobody has yet come into the building. We haven’t signed any new players. We are in talks with two or three new players.
“We’ve set our stall out and are pursuing interests, but at the moment nothing has been delivered.”