Manchester United brilliant start to the campaign was halted last weekend by their arch rivals Manchester City. The Citizens took a two-goal lead before Ibrahimovic’s superb finish brought the Red back into the game, however, Guardiola’s men were able to see out the rest of the game without much difficulty. Mourinho in his post-match press conference mentioned how he was disappointed with a few players in the first half. He said, “Honestly, I had two or three players in the first half that, if the game is now and I know what is going to happen, I don’t play them.” In particular, it was the performance of Jesse Lingard and Henrikh Mkhitaryan which must have worried the manager the most.
Both the players were making their first start of the season but couldn’t get into the game at all. By half-time Mourinho had realised that he had made a mistake in selecting his starting XI and duly pulled both Mkhitaryan and Lingard off. In their place Marcus Rashford and Herrera were brought in, and both of them added that missing pace to the United’s game and suddenly the play looked threatening. In particular, it was again Marcus Rashford’s performance that caught the eye most. Mourinho also made it clear that the 18-year-old will start tonight’s Europa league match but is it time for the Portuguese to give the youngster a starting birth in the Premier League also. Here are three reasons why Rashford should start the games more often.
Marcus Rashford made his first team debut only this February, however, the English international has quickly made a name for himself. He has been in top form since that debut double against Midtjylland and is currently one of the most lethal players in the United squad. With Rooney not operating at his full potential and Martial struggling for form since the Euros, it is the perfect opportunity for Mourinho to give Rashford a starting birth. In United’s game against Hull City, he came on to score the winner in the closing stages of the game. Even in the derby, it was his introduction that changed the momentum of the game in favour of United.
It was mainly Rashford’s pace that made the Manchester City defenders most uncomfortable. It’s his direct running that could prove to be United’s biggest weapon especially against oppositions that like to sit back. There’s minimal pace in the front four of United, and bringing Rashford in would be a massive test for opposition defenders.
There are many players who are very threatening around the box but aren’t able to slot the ball into the back of the net. This is where Rashford excels over others. He scored a total of 9 goals last season with a rate of one goal every two games and this season also, he has four goals in the last 3 matches, including the hat-trick on his England under-21 debut. Therefore while his build up game is excellent, it is his strike rate that should impress the manager the most.