Jose Mourinho felt Manchester United were worthy 4-0 winners over Wigan, but believes his side started slowly in the game.
Marouane Fellaini put United ahead a minute shy of the break before second-half goals from Chris Smalling, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Bastian Schweinsteiger eased the Premier League side into the FA Cup fifth round.
“We deserved to win, the first half was not very, very good but we managed to be 1-0 in front and then at half-time we spoke about changing a few things in the dynamic of the team,” Mourinho told BBC One.
“The boys accepted it obviously well and the second half was much better, the job was done and we are in the last 16.
“We knew Warren (Joyce, Wigan manager) would organise the team defensively very well with aggression, with a lot of man-to-man.
“We knew that to break that wall we needed to play better than we did in the first half but we were quite lucky to be 1-0 up and then in the second half with more space we killed the game.”
Zero to hero
Rooney, who became United’s record goalscorer earlier this month, was the subject of fresh reports linking him with a move to China on Sunday morning.
But it was the future of Schweinsteiger, who scored in the 4-0 defeat of the Championship Latics on his first start for more than a year, which was made the clearest.
Mourinho said of the German World Cup-winner: “Yes, he is staying. He is going to (be included on) the Europa League list because we opened spaces with (Memphis) Depay and (Morgan) Schneiderlin (leaving) and we don’t have many players, and we don’t have many options in midfield.
“Ninety minutes (against Wigan) was probably too hard for him, from minutes 65-70 it was hard for him but now I think he is happy.
“He was a good professional when he was not playing, and after having some minutes he will be the same. With so many competitions and games he will be an option.”
Mourinho deflected a question about England captain Rooney in his post-match press conference by speaking about former England international Young.
He said: “The only player that I am aware of a possibility to leave, and I am waiting for January 31 to know what is going on, is Ashley Young, a player I would love to keep.
“I am not happy if he leaves, but he is the only player that I am informed has a possibility of leaving. That is why he didn’t play and I gave chances to other people, because I don’t know if he is going to stay.
“If I could choose, definitely yes he would stay with us.”