The hosts worked the first opportunity of the night from a free kick on 15 minutes, with Javier Hernandez nearly getting on the end of Juan Mata's whipped free kick, but Diego Alves came out to claim the ball ahead of the Mexico international.
United were beginning to string together some nice passing moves, and Ander Herrera tried his luck from distance following one such flowing piece of play, only for his effort to end up wide of the target.
Herrera picked out Ashley Young shortly after the 30-minute mark, and the winger found Rooney inside the box; Rooney was subsequently nudged in the back, leaving the referee no choice but to point to the spot.
Rooney brushed himself down but was unable to fire United ahead, striking the post with his spot kick. The striker almost redeemed himself before the interval, although he was unable to control Darren Fletcher's pass on the edge of the area and another chance passed by.