Rooney has put in a number of poor performances for Man United this season and has only scored twice in the Premier League.
There have been calls from United fans for Rooney to be dropped from the lone striker role in favour of Anthony Martial, who has looked far more dangerous this term.
However, Sheringham insisted Rooney can be effective for United once again if van Gaal switches his system.
“Rooney will score goals if he is given the right kind of set-up to work in. He has proved that time and again down the years,” Sheringham said.
“All I would say is playing up front on your own is very tough. Not many players can pull that off successfully. I certainly wouldn’t have fancied trying to play that role and I always had a partner alongside me.
“Van Gaal is trying something different at Man United and it is not quite suiting Wayne Rooney at the moment. You have a top-quality player there, so you would like to think there is a way of finding a system that will suit him. It is up to the manager to work that out. They are fourth in the league, two points behind the leaders. That doesn’t sound like a bad position to be in if you are not firing on all cylinders.
“They could be playing great football in the Premier League and still be fourth, so people need to keep some perspective and see how it all pans out later in the season. They have good players at United, so I’m sure they will do well.”
Rooney has played up top, in the No.10 position and on the left wing at points this season and has looked equally ineffective in all three roles. There seems to be a lot of excuses being made for Rooney’s performances but the player must start to look at himself. Van Gaal also needs to question why he continues to play the 30-year-old.