Wayne Rooney will have a big part to play over the next couple of years for Manchester United, Roy Keane has said.

Rooney, 30, was left out of the starting lineup for the first time in the Premier League this season when United beat Leicester City 4-1 on Saturday, and Jose Mourinho is unsure whether to recall his captain for the Europa League match against Zorya Luhansk in the Europa League amid scrutiny.

But Keane believes Rooney remains central to United’s chances of success.

“He will have a huge part to play,” the former United skipper told ITV. “He has been criticised recently for his performances, but he is still a young age.

“Even though he played a lot of football after starting at a young age of 16 or 17, he is still a big player for Man United. He will have a big part to play over the next year or two.”

Fellow forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic is set to start against Zorya Luhansk, with Mourinho saying in his news conference on Wednesday that he would include the Swede in a relatively strong side after losing the opening game of the Europa League campaign against Feyenoord.

Looking ahead to the game, in the matchday programme, midfielder Juan Mata said: “We know they are going to be tough. I guess they will be a very physical side but we know we have to win as, when we are playing away in Ukraine, the conditions will be very difficult.

“We want to be first in the group and, after getting no points at Feyenoord, we need the victory.”