Wayne Rooney is staying at Manchester United, says Sir Alex Ferguson

Sir Alex Ferguson has said Wayne Rooney will be a Manchester United player next season, despite feverish speculation about the striker's future.

After Rooney was left out of United's crucial Champions League tie with Real Madrid on Tuesday, many pundits predicted the 27-year-old will leave in the summer.

Some journalists had even claimed Ferguson and Rooney are no longer speaking to each other at United's Carrington training ground.

However Ferguson begun his press conference by asking the assembled journaliststs: "[Do you want] The Wayne Rooney nonsense first? Or do you want to talk sense? The issue you're all going on about is rubbish.

"There's absolutely no issue between Wayne Rooney and I. The suggestion we don't talk on the training ground is nonsense. I've banned two papers from the press conference and they won't get back in here until they apologise.

"He [Rooney] understood the reasons for not playing him and that was completely tactical. And I think I was right. We don't always get it right but I think we did get it right. Danny Welbeck is the best player we have in terms of operating in a double role.

"We had to choke Xabi Alonso's ability to control the game, which Danny did, and that took away Alonso's control of the game and his ability to go further forward and be an attacking player. We don't always get it right but we definitely did on Tuesday.

"Wayne will be here next year. You have my word on that."

The United manager also revealed that Rooney will have a role to play during United's FA Cup quarter-final with Chelsea on Sunday, although Phil Jones will not be fit in time and Ryan Giggs will be rested after his exertions on Tuesday.

Ferguson said of the Chelsea clash: "It's a home draw and I always say that if you get a home draw you're happy. Hopefully we can navigate that and get through."

Turning to the controversy surrounding Tuesday's referee Cuneyt Cakir, whose decision to send off Nani turned the game in Real's favour, Ferguson said: "It's hard to keep your faith when you see what's happened the last few years. It's the third time we've been knocked out because of [poor referring decisions].

"It's not easy to take but we're Manchester United and we have to get on with it."

Ferguson was visibly disgusted by Cakir's decision, and refused to speak to the press after the match. However the Turkish referee received an outstanding score in his match appraisal from assessor Pierluigi Collina.