Manchester United will be without Wayne Rooney for their visit to Saints next weekend, after the striker sustained a nasty injury in their 3-2 win over Fulham on Saturday.

Rooney, pictured, is expected to be out of action for about a month after suffering a deep cut to his leg when Hugo Rodallega landed on him in stoppage time at Old Trafford.

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson described the wound as “a very bad one” and said the player, who visited hospital after the game, would be ruled out for four weeks.

His initial diagnosis was emphasised by the reaction of surgeons, who were “surprised” at the depth of the cut.

While there will be no Rooney, Saints will still have to deal with Robin van Persie at St Mary’s next Sunday.

The striker, who signed for United from Arsenal this summer, scored on his home debut, steering a sublime left-foot effort past Mark Schwarzer to set Ferguson’s men on course for their first three points of the campaign.